Thousands of images, texts, and audio/video from ECU's diverse collections and beyond.

Tar heel disciples, 1841-1852; proceedings of the North Carolina convention, Disciples of Christ, during its first twelve years

Date: 1942 | Identifier: BX7305 .N6 1841-52
Tar heel disciples, 1841-1852; proceedings of the North Carolina convention, Disciples of Christ, during its first twelve years, edited by Charles Crossfield Ware. New Bern, N. C. : Printed for the North Carolina Christian Missionary Convention by Owen G. Dunn co., printers, 1942. 104 p., illus. (port.) 23 cm. Minutes of the conferences transcribed by T. J. Latham. Contains minutes from conferences held at: Piney Grove Meeting House, Sampson Co. ; Welch's Creek Meeting House, Martin Co. ; Wheat Swamp Meeting House, Lenoir Co. ; Hookerton, Greene Co. ; Post Oak Meeting House on Swift Creek, Craven Co. ; Pleasant Hill Meeting House, Jones Co. ; Mill Creek Meeting House, Johnston Co. ; Kinston, Lenoir Co. ; Roundtree's Meeting House, Pitt Co. ; Oak Grove Meeting House, Greene Co. ; Elm Grove Meeting House, Pitt Co. more...
Image
Read/Search




















Tar Heel Disciples
1841-1852









Tar Heel Disciples
1841-1852

PROCEEDINGS OF THE NORTH CAROLINA
CONVENTION, DISCIPLES OF CHRIST,
DURING ITS FIRST TWELVE YEARS

EDITED BY CHARLES CROSSFIELD WARE
PRINTED FOR

THE NORTH CAROLINA CHRISTIAN MISSIONARY CONVENTION
BYOWEN G. DUNN CO., PRINTERS
NEW BERN, N. C.
1942




[Illustration:

THOMAS JORDAN LATHAM, 1797-1862
]





DEDICATED
TO THE MEMORY
OF
THOMAS JORDAN LATHAM

Scribe, Archivist, Preacher Who Preserved These “Minutes” In The Old “Conference Book” Passing It To His Son Josephus Making Possible This CENTENNIAL Transcription.









CHRONOLOGY
THOMAS JORDAN LATHAM

October 31, 1797, born at Pantego, N. C.

1812-1820, (approximate), trained in one of Carolina's best schools. It was in Robeson County. Judge Manly was a schoolmate. There Latham learned well the dead languages. Furthermore, thank Heaven, he developed a shining gift for correct spelling and legible handwriting in the approved English of his day!!

1820-1830, (approximate), taught school with “marked success.”

February 4, 1821, married Nancy Cordon; issue, twelve children.

1830, (approximate), confessed Christ at Pantego and was baptized by Elder Henry Smith.

October 2, 1830 helped organize Concord Free Will Baptist Church, with 36 members. It later became Pantego Christian Church. Here Latham was church clerk for a long period.

April, 1834, entertained Thomas Campbell, father of Alexander Campbell, in his Pantego home.

January 13, 1839, his first wife having died, he married Ann E. Everett, of Martin Co., N.C.; issue, five children.

1839-1855, served as pastor, (“presiding Elder”), at Pantego.

1840-1850 (approximate), served as postmaster at Pantego, and Master of Equity for Hyde County, while Hyde yet included Pantego.

Nov. 11-14, 1841, in his keynote message (“circular letter”), at the annual meeting of Bethel Conference, he cleared the way for a merger, (May 2, 1845), of that Conference with the local Union Meeting of Disciples of Christ. Thus he began the “Minutes” of these annual state meetings in 1841. The regular annual state meeting of October 9-12, 1845, after formal Union with Disciples, thus counts as No. 1. These state Conventions having been held annually without a break since 1845, it follows that 1944 marks the one hundredth such convention.





1853, removed to Washington, N. C., serving there as postmaster.

1855, candidate for U. S. Congress.

April 20, 1862, died, and was buried at eastern edge of Pantego village, a few steps south of the present eastwest Federal Highway. He was survived by only four of his seventeen children, one of whom, Josephus, (1828-1889), was an evangelist of North Carolina Disciples for forty years.





CONTENTS

ForewordPages 9, 10
1841Pages 11-17
1842Pages 17-24
1843Pages 24-29
1844Pages 29-34
1845Pages 34-40
1846Pages 40-51
1847Pages 52-61
1848Pages 61-69
1849Pages 69-78
1850Pages 78-83
1851Pages 83-95
1852Pages 95-103
Tar Heel Towns 1850Page 104









FOREWORD

North Carolina Disciples of Christ have two Nineteenth Century origins, contemporaneous and distinct. The locale for both was eastern North Carolina on the coastal plains about midway between the borders of the “Palmetto” and the “Old Dominion” states.

The one arose within the Regular Baptists, in the Neuse and Kehukee Associations, under John Patrick Dunn, General William Clark, and a few associates. It emerged as “The Union Meeting of Disciples of Christ.” They had occasional fellowship meetings from 1831 onward, but so far as known, they had no scribe, or archivist. They probably had little mind for history, as they have left us but mere fragments on the record. About all that we know about them, prior to their union with the Bethel Conference in 1845, we have to get from outside sources.

The other evolved within the Bethel Free Will Baptist Conference, led by Thomas Jordan Latham and others. It was first named “The Bethel Conference” in 1841. It was from an old order and they had a much larger group than the Disciples’ Union Meeting, although the Disciples numbered some wealthy planters in their fellowship, and had several churches in the counties of Lenoir, Pitt, Greene, and Beaufort. Fortunately Bethel Conference had in Latham a gifted soul who did the documentary chore for posterity. He left hundreds of pages of clear and precise script in the old ledger called in their annual state meetings, the “bound book.” He also, year by year, published the many thousands of small printed pamphlets, called “Minutes”, which have to this generation all but disappeared. For the period, 1841 to 1852, inclusive, we have by a quarter-century's persistent effort, unearthed from the wreckage of time, a few museum pieces of these prints, all of which literally can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Like the leaves of the forest they perished with their season. It is but another instance of the incredible waste of an adolescent America.

Thanks to the archival instinct of Latham, we are able to transcribe on the following pages his meticulous script





for this primitive period. Thanks also to John James Harper and Jesse Cobb Caldwell, of later generations, for keeping these archives in the old iron safe at Atlantic Christian College.

For the first time this large body of source material is here presented, totally and connectedly, in print. Readers may see clearly and simply this growing communion in the drama of its beginnings. We dare not claim that this presentation is wholly without error. We are but human. I submit, however, that typists, and printers, and editor, have done what they could to make it dependable and useful.

It is a worthy heritage. And it is ours to use worthily.

CHARLES CROSSFIELD WARE.

Wilson, N. C., Easter, 1942





MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE OF NORTH CAROLINA: HELD AT PINEY GROVE MEETING HOUSE, SAMPSON COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA: ON THE 11TH, 12TH, 13TH AND 14TH DAYS OF NOVEMBER, A. D. 1841.

Thursday, Nov. 11th, 1841. Agreeably to previous appointment, the Ministers and delegates of the Bethel Conference of North Carolina, met at Piney Grove, Sampson County, for a General Conference. At 12 o'clock, Elder Lewis F. Williams by vote of last Conference, introduced public worship, and preached from Matthew 11th chapter, and 19th verse: “Wisdom is justified of her children.” Conference was then organized by choosing Bro. Winsor Dixon, Moderator, and Elder John L. Clifton, Assistant Moderator; and Bro. Reuben Barrow, Clerk, and Bro. Joel Joyner, Jr., assistant clerk.

Agreed that brethren Lewis F. Williams and H. Bryan be a committee of Finance, to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer, and report to Conference; and that Bro. James Lewis be appointed Treasurer, protem, in the absence of the General Treasurer. Voted that Elders Robert Bond, John H. Dixon and Jacob Utley be a committee to supply the congregation, and fill the stage with preachers during this conference.

On motion, agreed: That Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock.

Prayer, etc. by Elder John F. Jones.

Friday, Nov. 12th. Met agreeably to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder John H. Dixon.

On Motion the letters from the several churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number of members, etc. and amount of contributions were as the following table exhibits:

Churches and CountiesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
1. North East, Duplin Co.664$ 1.00
2. Beaver Creek, Jones Co.17
3. Pleasant Hill, Jones Co.201.00
4. Luzen Swamp, Lenoir Co.80





Churches and CountiesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
5. Wheat Swamp, Lenoir Co.222118$ 2.00
6. Bethel, Lenoir Co.1661.00
7. Sand Hill Lenoir Co.30
8. Woodenton Lenoir Co.1127.50
9. Hickory Grove, Lenoir Co.21281.00
10. Gum Swamp, Pitt Co.7211691.00
11. Tar River, Pitt Co.1155.75
12. Parker's, Pitt Co.221140.50
13. Fellows’ Chapel, Pitt Co.12
14. Imitation, Pitt Co.35
15. Reedy Branch, Pitt Co.381.00
16. Settle Creek, Greene Co.12111041.00
17. Grimsley's, Greene Co.121261.50
18. Hart's, Greene Co.2621.00
19. Hookerton, Greene Co.211182.00
20. Core Creek, Craven Co.40
21. Bachelor's Creek, Craven Co.17
22. New Bern, Craven Co.46
23. Concord, Craven Co.40
24. Little Swift Creek Craven Co.22691.00
25. Bay River Craven Co.38
26. Brice's Creek, Craven Co.
27. Goose Creek, Craven Co.68
28. Post Oak, Craven Co.2481.00
29. Bethany, Craven Co.
30. Bay Creek, Craven Co.
31. Piney Grove, Sampson Co.9821182.00
32. Ten Miles Sampson Co.152301.00
33. Rowan, Sampson Co.381.00
34. Mill Creek, Johnston Co.111121082.00
35. Pungo, Beaufort Co.1.50
36. Concord Beaufort Co.821.50
37. Beaver Dam, Beaufort Co.43.50
38. South Creek, Beaufort Co.30.50
39. Durham's Creek, Beaufort Co.461.00
40. Jones’ Bay, Beaufort Co.2531.75
41. Welch's Creek, Martin Co.1401.00
42. Stony Run, Cumberland Co.31
43. Core Creek, Carteret Co.
AMOUNT12631420152,072$ 30.00

On motion, the circular letter, ordered by last Conference, was called for, read, accepted, and ordered to be attached to these Minutes.

On motion of Elder Robert Bond, agreed: That Bro. Reuben Barrow write a Circular Letter to be read in the next General Conference.

On motion, agreed: That Elder Thomas J. Latham transcribe these Minutes, prepare them for the press,





attend to the printing, and distribute these Minutes among the churches through the medium of the Post Office; and that he receive the funds now in the treasury to pay for the printing and postage.

The Committee of Finance submitted the following report:

TREASURERDR.
To amount of contributions this year$30.00
CONTRACR.
By deposit to pay for printing and postage$30.00

Agreed that this Conference be hereafter called the Bethel Conference of North Carolina.

Agreed that the next annual Conference be held at Welche's Creek, Martin County; and that it commence on the Thursday before the 2nd Lord's Day in November, 1842.

Agreed that Elder Thomas J. Latham preach the introductory sermon, and, on his failure, Elder Henry Smith.

Agreed, that a vote of thanks be tendered to the inhabitants of this vicinity for their kindness and hospitality.

Elder Thos. J. Latham closed conference by prayer, etc.

WINSOR DIXON, Mod.

REUBEN BARROW, Clerk.

N.B. The stage was supplied, and the congregation entertained as follows:

Friday, Nov. 12. Elder John F. Jones introduced divine service, and preached from Ezekiel 33c, 11v.

Elder John H. Dixon from Micah 6c, 8v.

Elder Jacob Utley from Job 21c, 15v.

Saturday, Nov. 13. Elder Robert Bond introduced divine service, and preached 10 and 11 chapters of Acts.

Elder Thos. J. Latham from Eph. 4c, 2, 3, 4 & 5 v.

Elder John P. Dunn from John 17 chap.





Sunday, Nov. 14. Elder R. Bond introduced divine service by singing and prayer.

Elder Thos. J. Latham preached from Acts 2c, 41 and 42 v.

Elder John P. Dunn from Rom. 3c, 19v.

Elder Lewis F. Williams closed by exhortation and prayer.

LIST OF PREACHERS AND ELDERS BELONGING
TO THE BETHEL CONFERENCE OF NORTH
CAROLINA

Robert BondAldred Moore
John H. DixonJohn Barrow
Thos. ReavisTheophilus Slaughton
Wm. LathamJohn Powell
Jacob UtleyJohn F. Jones
Wm. MagownsDickinson Daile
Peyton RackleyWillie T. Mobley
Roderic PowellJess Howering
Jess VauseWm. C. Gardner
Benj. ParrottNathan Stancill
John L. CliftonThos. C. Baker
John CrickmanLewis F. Williams
Joshua RiceHenry Smith
James LewisFred B. Silverthorn
Jordan CoxThomas J. Latham
Wilson DanielsWm. R. Fulshire
John M. GurganusJeremiah Rowe

CIRCULAR LETTER

DEAR BRETHREN:

The profession of Christianity may be divided into two classes or parties. The one party contends that the Christian Religion came pure from the Holy Apostles and Evangelists—and that it is contained in the New Testament. The other party, though professing a belief in the divinity of the scriptures, contend, nevertheless, that they are not a sufficient rule of Faith and Discipline—and that Formulas of Discipline, composed by uninspired men, are indispensibly necessary, as bonds of





Christian union. Among the former party I think the brethren, commonly called Free Will Baptists, may generally be classed. Indeed the 7th article of their creed, as published, says: “We believe the whole Scriptures are true, and that they are the only rules of Faith and Practice.”

The object of this address is to enforce this article by showing its accordance with the practice of the primitive Christians; and that all Christians can unite on the Scriptures and on no other bond of union.

That it is according to the practice of primitive Christians. See Acts 2c, 42v. “And they continued steadfastly in the Apostles’ doctrine,” etc. And the Apostle Paul, addressing the Galatian Church, continues them thus: “But though we, or an angel from Heaven, preach any other Gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you, then that you have received, let him be accursed.” Gal. 1st ch. 8 and 9 verses. Tertullian, in his apology for the Christians, written about the end of the second Century, says: “We are a body with-in one bond of religion, discipline and hopes. We meet in our assemblies for prayer. We are compelled to have recourse to the divine oracles for caution and recollection on all occasions. We nourish our faith by the Word of God,” etc. See Justin Martyr's Apology. In short it is admitted on all hands, so far as I am informed, that the churches were independent of each other, and had no other authoritative Creed or discipline than the Scriptures, until the Emperor Constantine commanded the Ecumenical, or general council, which was held at Nice, A. D. 325. Since that time creeds and confessions of faith, drawn up by uninspired men have mostly influenced the professed Christian world. And what have been the consequences? The Roman Catholic Church alone boasts of having slain fifty million of those whom she calls heretics—to say nothing of the unchristian contentions, murders, and wars of the other sects and denominations of Christiandom.—Omitting also to notice particularly the





many absurd and contradictory dogmas which have been, and are, even now, countenanced by those who prefess to be Christians.

All Christians can unite on the Scriptures as the rule of Faith and practice, and on them alone.

In the 17th chapter of John's Gospel we are informed that our Savior prayed: “That they (the Apostles) might be one. As we (the Father and Son) are one.” And again, “neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one; as thou Father, are in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” Hence it appears that the uniting of believers on the word of the apostles and Evangelists, as the basis of their union, must precede the faith and of consequence, the conversion of the world. And, assuredly, nothing is better calculated to blind the understanding and harden the heart of the unbeliever, than the present divided state of Christian professors.

Again, we have seen, that for nearly three centuries Christian professors “remained steadfastly in the Apostles doctrine”; that they were “a body united in one bond of religion, discipline and hope”: “having recourse to the divine oracles for caution and recollection on all occasions,” etc. And yet we know that during that period Christianity flourished in spite of all the opposition and persecution of Jews and heathen. Why would it not flourish again if its professors were again to return to the Apostles’ doctrine, as their rule of faith and discipline, laying aside all uninspired creeds, etc. and appealing in all cases to the Scriptures, and to them alone?

Let us select one or two examples to illustrate our views.

Baptism is one great source of the unholy contentions which pervade Christiandom. Some professors contend that baptism means either sprinkling, pouring, or immersion. Others contend that it means immersion only. Why cannot all unite on the practice of immersion, as all admit its correctness; and dispense with sprinkling and pouring, which some cannot conscientiously practice.





Another source of contention is Calvinistic predestination. What is to be done with him who supposes Calvinism to be true? If his walk is orderly and pious, let him not be excommunicated for opinion's sake. But if he endeavors to enforce his opinions as a bond of union or church membership, he then becomes a schismatic, and should be excluded. Two persons may be of the one Faith, practice the one Baptism, and adore the one Lord, etc., and yet differ in opinions on many subjects not clearly, if at all, revealed in the scriptures. Is it necessary that all should think precisely alike? Certainly not. It is probable no two persons in Christiandom think exactly alike on all points respecting the Christian Religion; and of course no church could exist if this were required.

That all can unite on the Scriptures we have endeavored to prove, so far as the limits of a circular will permit. That they cannot unite on any one sectarian creed, needs no other proof than the present divided state of Christian professors.

Let us then, my beloved brethren, adhere to the divine oracles, and endeavor to regulate our conduct both as members of the church of Christ, and as members of society, according to their instructions. Let us not only at home around our family altars, but also on every Lord's Day in our churches, continue steadfastly in the Apostles’ Doctrine, etc. Above all things let us abound in Love, without which Christian profession is vain.

Yours in Gospel bonds,

THOMAS J. LATHAM.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE OF NORTH
CAROLINA: HELD AT WELCH'S CREEK MEETING
HOUSE, MARTIN COUNTY, ON THE 10TH, 11TH,
12TH AND 13TH OF NOVEMBER, 1842.

Thursday, Nov. 10th, 1842. The Ministers and delegates of the Bethel Conference met at Welch's Creek, M. H., Martin County.

At 12 o'clock Elder Wm. G. Gardner introduced public worship, by singing and prayer, after which, according





to the arrangement of the last conference, Elder Thomas J. Latham preached the introductory sermon from the 17th chapter of John.

Conference was then organized by choosing Elder Thos. J. Latham, Moderator; and Elder Robert Bond, assistant Moderator; and Bro. Jacob Tench, Clerk, and Bro. Willie Moore, assistant clerk.

On motion agreed, that conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 A. M. Prayer, etc. by Elder John Powell.

Friday, Nov. 11. Met according to adjournment. Prayer by Bro. B. Weeks.

On motion, agreed that Brethren Thos. P. Hartsfield and Elias Turnage be a committee to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer, and report to the conference.

On motion, the circular letter prepared by Brother Reuben Barrow, at the request of the last conference, was read for the consideration of this Conference.

On motion, the letters from the several churches were called for, read and accepted. The number of members, amount of contributions, etc. were as follows: namely,

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contri-Butions
DuplinNorth East64$
JonesBeaver Creek17
JonesBy Letter2221.00
LenoirLuzen Swamp80
LenoirWheat SwampThos. P. Hartsfield22831402.00
LenoirBethel66
LenoirSand Hill30
LenoirWoodentonBy Letter31.50
LenoirHickory Grove28
PittGum Swamp69
PittTar RiverJordan Johnson11551.00
PittParker's M. H.40
PittFellows Chapel12
PittImitation35
PittReedy BranchJesse S. Jenkins2139
GreeneLittle CreekJesse Hart1211161.50
GreeneGrimesley's126
GreeneHart'sElias Turnage641.75
GreeneHookertonWm. Ormond241241352.00
CravenCore Creek40





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
CravenBachelor's Creek17$
CravenNew Bern46
CravenConcord40
CravenLittle Swift CreekWm. R. Caton42601.50
CravenBay River38
CravenBrice's Creek
CravenGoose CreekSam S. Simpson541.00
CravenPost OakBy Letter2581.00
CravenBethanyW. W. Broughton12.50
CravenBay Creek8
SampsonPiney Grove118
SampsonTen Miles30
SampsonRowan38
JohnstonMill Creek128
BeaufortPungoSam'l L. Davis34671.00
BeaufortConcordEphm Ratcliff103881.00
BeaufortBeaver DamThos. Everett43.50
BeaufortSouth Creek30
BeaufortDurham's Creek46
BeaufortJones’ BayWm. Campen21351.00
MartinWelche's CreekCullen Ange71461.00
CumberlandStoney Run31
CarteretCore Creek
AMOUNT39713192,216$ 18.25

On motion, Agreed that Elder John H. Dixon be requested to visit the churches at Parker's and Gum Swamp, before the next Annual Conference.

On motion, Agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to attend the Union Meetings of certain churches in Martin, Pitt, and Beaufort Counties.

On motion, Agreed that eleven hundred copies of these Minutes be printed for distribution.

On motion, agreed that Elder Thos. J. Latham be requested to prepare these Minutes for the press, attend to the printing, and distribute them by mail; and that he receive the funds now in the Treasury to pay for the printing.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John H. Dixon be requested to prepare a circular letter to be read in the next Annual Conference, etc.





On motion, The Circular Letter prepared by Bro. Reuben Barrow was read again, accepted, and ordered to be attached to these minutes.

On motion, voted: That the next Annual Conference be held at Wheat Swamp, M. H., Lenoir County; and that it commence on Thursday before the second Lord's Day in November 1843.

On motion, agreed that Elder Benjamin Parrott be requested to preach the introductory sermon; and upon his failure, Elder John H. Dixon.

On motion, Conference was adjourned till tomorrow at 10 A. M. Prayer, etc. by Elder John M. Gurganus.

Saturday, Nov. 12. Met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder B. Parrott.

On motion, agreed: That Bro. David Watson be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.

The committee of Finance submitted the following Report:

TREASURERDR.
To Contribution last year$30.00
To Contribution this year$18.25
$48.25
CONTRACR.
By cash pd. for printing Minutes last year$15.00
By cash pd. for postage Minutes last year$13.50
By cash pd. Thos. J. Latham, Expense Acct. to Washington to superintend printing$ 1.50
By balance on hand deposited with Thos. J. Latham by order of Conference$18.25
$48.25

On motion, agreed that a vote of thanks be tendered to the inhabitants of this vicinity for their kindness and hospitality to this Conference.

On motion, agreed; that the name of Elder John F. Jones be erased from the list of Elders and preachers of this Conference in compliance with his request, signified by Thos. P. Hartsfield.





Elder Henry Smith closed Conference by prayer, etc.

THOMAS J. LATHAM, Mod.

JACOB TENCH, Clerk.

The Stage was supplied and congregation entertained as follows:

Friday, Nov. 11. Elder John Powell introduced worship by singing and prayer.

Bro. Benj. Weeks preached from Gal. 1st Chap. 8th and 9th verses.

Elder John Powell preached from Rom. 5th Chap. 1st verse.

Elder Henry Smith concluded by singing and prayer.

Saturday, Nov. 12. Elder Benjamin Parrott introduced public worship, and preached from Rom. 1st Chap. 16th verse “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, etc.”

Elder John P. Dunn followed, and preached from Mat. 7 Chap. 21, 22, and 23 verses “Not everyone that saith unto me,” etc.

Elder Robert Bond concluded by exhortation and prayer, etc.

Lord's Day, Nov. 13. Bro. Benjamin Weeks introduced worship by singing and prayer.

Elder Thos. J. Latham preached from I John, 4 chap. 19 verse “We love Him because He first loved us.”

Elder John P. Dunn preached from I Tim. 4 chap. 10 verse, “For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe.”

Elder Henry Smith closed by exhortation and prayer.

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS BELONGING
TO THE BETHEL CONFERENCE

Henry SmithJohn L. Clifton
Robert BondJohn Crickman
Jacob UtleyThos. C. Baker
Jesse VauseJordan Cox
Benj. ParrottWillie T. Mobley





Jesse HoweringJeremiah Rowe
Wm. C. GardnerBenj. Weeks
Nathan StancillWm. Magowns
Stephen D. CollinsPeyton Rackley
John H. DixonRoderick Powell
Thomas ReavisJohn Powell
Wm. LathamLewis F. Williams
Joshua RiceWilson Daniels
James LewisJohn M. Gurganus
Dickinson DaileAlfred Moore
Fred B. SilverthornJohn Barrow
Thos. J. LathamTheophilus Staughton
Wm. R. FulshireDavid Watson

CIRCULAR

DEAR BRETHREN:

In obedience to an order of your last annual conference, it becomes my duty to write a Circular Letter to be read in your present Conference; and if approved, annexed to the Minutes of the same. While I reflect on my inability to discharge the duty, you have laid upon me, and my responsibility to my Heavenly Master for the manner in which I may discharge it, I feel that I need much assistance from Him who came into the world to teach us how we should live in this world, in order that we may live with Him in Heaven.

I know of no subject which should be more strictly enforced on your minds than Christian Union and fellowship. For I have observed, with profound regret, the great efforts that have been, and are still making by some, who profess to be followers of the meek and lowly Jesus, to sew the seeds of discord and disunion amongst the brethren. When we reflect upon the great solicitude which our divine Master entertained, that his followers might be united in one body, when he offered up his last intercession prayer to His Heavenly Father, before he was crucified, pleading for his disciples, he says “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they may all be one, as their Father is in me, and I in Him, that they also





may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” And now dear brethren, in order to effect this great and glorious purpose, for which our divine Master so earnestly prayed to His Heavenly Father, let us search the scriptures diligently and prayerfully, and endeavor by all possible means to conform, as much as in us lies, to their Divine precepts; and then all jars and discords will be done away from amongst us, and brotherly love, that heavenly principle, will flow from breast to breast, and we all be united in Christian love and fellowship. I am well aware, my brethren, that there are many professors of religion, who do not believe, that the New Testament contains all that is actually necessary for that church government; and that consequently rules of discipline, drawn up by some leading member, or members of the church, are especially necessary as bonds of Christian Union. Whatever ideas I may have formerly entertained on this subject, I am now fully of the opinion, after a careful perusal of the Holy Scriptures, that all rules of discipline, and formalities of doctrine, written by uninspired men, are altogether useless and unprofitable; and that they are one great cause of the divisions and contentions which pervade the Christian world at the present day. And now my beloved brethren, I would earnestly intreat you to search the Scriptures diligently and prayerfully—and especially the Epistles—and you will finally, I have not much doubt, come to the conclusion to take the New Testament for your only Rule of Faith and practice. Let us therefore, my brethren, read for ourselves, and judge for ourselves, and not take the opinions of any man, unless they are in accordance with the word of God. The Scriptures are intended to enlighten and instruct the mind, and the more familiar we become with them, the better we shall be prepared to conform to their divine principles. “Be ye therefore, steadfast, immoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord; in as much as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” We are also commanded to pray for one another, and to help each other on our journey through this unfriendly world; but I greatly fear this is





not the case with us all. For it is greatly to be feared that some are pursuing the opposite course. “Let us love one another with a pure heart feverently.” “We should bear each others burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” “For by this shall all men know ye are my disciples (said Christ), if ye have love one for another.” Then let us show ourselves to be the true disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ, by following in the path he has marked out for us. Circumstances which are not under my control, compel me to draw to a close. In conclusion permit me to say that no light or frivolous circumstances should cause a division among us; for we have been taught that union is strong. Then let us nourish it in our own breasts; let us encourage it in the church with meekness and Christian forbearance.

“Now I beseech you brethren by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” And now my dear brethren, if we are never permitted to meet again in this mournful vale, O may we meet in that house, not made with hands, eternal in the heavens, where we may enjoy each others presence, and the presence of our God forever—which God grant to be all our happy lot for Christ's sake, Amen.

REUBEN BARROW.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE OF NORTH CAROLINA, HELD AT WHEAT SWAMP MEETING HOUSE, LENOIR COUNTY, ON THE 9TH, 10TH, 11TH, AND 12TH OF NOVEMBER, 1843.

Thursday, Nov. 9th, 1843. The ministers and delegates of the Bethel Conference met at the Wheat Swamp, M. H., Lenoir County.

At 12 o'clock Elder Benjamin Parrott, according to the arrangement of the last conference, preached the introductory sermon from 2 Pet. 1 chap. 19 verse; “We have a more sound word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well, that ye take heed, as to a light that shineth in a dark place.”





Conference was then organized by choosing Bro. Winsor Dixon, Moderator; and Bro. Reuben Barrow, Clerk, and Bro. Joel Joyner, Jr., assistant clerk.

On motion of Elder Robert Bond the delegates from the Christian Association were invited to take seats in the conference, and Elder John P. Dunn, the only delegate present from said association, took a seat.

On motion, Elder Wm. Parrott from South Carolina, was invited, and took a seat in the Conference.

On motion of Elder Thos. J. Latham, Brother Seth H. Tyson, the delegate from a newly established church in Currituck, Hyde County, was invited and took his seat in Conference.

On motion of Elder John L. Clifton, Brethren Elias Turnage and Stephen K. Bryant were appointed a Committee of Finance, to receive contributions, settle with the treasurer, and report to the Conference.

On motion, agreed that Elders Henry Smith and Benjamin Parrott and Bro. Jacob Parrott, be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during this Conference.

On motion, agreed that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock, prayer, etc. by Elder William Parrott.

Friday, Nov. 10th, Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder H. Smith.

On motion of Elder Latham the letters from the several churches were called for, read and accepted. The number of members in fellowship, amount of contributions, etc. were as follows. (See page 26.)

On motion of Elder Robert Bond, Brother Winsor Dixon was appointed treasurer of this Conference.

On motion of Elder John L. Clifton, agreed, that the time of holding the Bethel Annual Conference be changed from the Thursday before the second Lord's Day in November to the Thursday before the second Lord's Day in Oct.

Voted that the next Annual Conference be held at Hookerton, Greene County; and that it commence on Thursday before the second Lord's Day in Oct. 1844.





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
DuplinNorth East64$
JonesPleasant HillWm. Brown1341561.00
LenoirWheat SwampWm. White63311902.00
LenoirWoodentonThos Causey12.50
PittGum Swamp69
PittTar RiverJohn Smith151.50
PittParker's40
PittImitation35
GreeneGrimesleysHillary Taylor1601.00
GreeneHart'sElias Turnage42259
GreeneHookertonWinsor Dixon7402.00
CravenConcordBy Letter444
CravenLittle Swift Cr.Asa Ipock1211701.50
CravenBay RiverMoses Caton34135.50
CravenBrice's Creek
CravenGoose CreekBy Letter761
CravenPost OakBy Letter381.00
CravenBethanyW. W. Broughton113.50
CravenBay CreekBy Letter234
SampsonPiney GroveStep. K. Bryant17712562772.00
SampsonRowan38
JohnstonMill CreekJoel Joyner, Jr.4333111352.00
BeaufortPungo67
BeaufortConcordJosephus Latham223431061.00
BeaufortBeaver Dam43
BeaufortSouth CreekBy Letter226.20
BeaufortDurham's Cr.By Letter461.00
BeaufortJones’ BayBy Letter134
MartinWelch's Creek46
CumberlandStoney Run31
CarteretCore Creek22
HydeCurrituckSeth H. Tyson514.40
AMOUNT15376228171,856$ 19.10

The committee of Finance submitted the following report:

TREASURERDR.
To Amt. of Contributions last year$18.25
To Amt. of Contributions this year19.10
$37.35

CONTRACR.
By cash paid for printing 1,100 copies of Minutes last year$16.00
By Balance now on hand21.35
$37.35





On motion of Elder B. Parrott agreed that Elder Henry Smith be requested to preach the introductory sermon at our next Conference, on his failure, Elder Robert Bond.

On motion, agreed, that the churches whose yearly meetings, etc. may be incorrectly stated in these minutes, be requested to have the proper corrections made at our next Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder J. P. Dunn.

Saturday, November 11th, 1843. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder Robert Bond.

On motion agreed: That Elder Robert Bond be requested to write a circular letter to be read in the next Conference, and if approved, attached to the Minutes of the same.

On motion agreed, that Elder Thos. J. Latham prepare these Minutes for the press; attend to the printing of one thousand copies; and distribute them by mail.

On motion agreed that the Treasurer deposit with Elder Thos. J. Latham a sum sufficient to pay for printing the said minutes.

The following preamble and resolutions, offered by Elder Thos. J. Latham were unanimously adopted by the Conference.

Whereas: Division among Christians is a promiscuous evil—antichristian, as it destroys the visible unity of the body of Christ, as if he were divided against himself, excluding and excommunicating a part of himself—Anti-scriptural, as being strictly prohibited by his Sovereign Authority; a direct violation of His express command—anti-natural, as it excites Christians to continue to hate and oppose one another, who are bound by the highest and most endearing obligations to love each other as brethren, “even as Christ loved” them. And whereas this Conference is desirous of removing every difficulty from the minds of such members of the church of Christ as are wishful to unite on the “faith once delivered to the saints.” Therefore:





Resolved, that this Conference consider each church of Christ, composed of its Elders, Deacons, and other members, as the highest ecclesiastical tribunal recognized in the New Testament, and therefore disclaims any ecclesiastical or controlling power over the churches of Christ as are willing to unite with us, on the Holy Scriptures, as the Rule of Faith and Discipline, reserving to themselves, respectively, the right to interpret the same, for their own regulations, and that they be affectionately invited to represent themselves by Delegates in this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that a vote of thanks be tendered to the inhabitants of this vicinity for their kindness and hospitality.

On motion, agreed that Conference adjourn to the time and place above stated. Prayer, etc. by Elder Clifton.

WINSOR DIXON, Moderator.

REUBEN BARROW, Clerk.

The stage was supplied, as nearly as the transcriber of these minutes can recollect, (for no notes, if any were taken, were handed over to him), as follows:

Friday, November 10th by Elder Wm. R. Fulshire and Wm. Parrott.

Saturday, November 11th by Elders William Parrott and Thos. J. Latham.

Lord's Day, November 12th, Elder Wm. B. Rhem preached from Heb. 2 chap. 3 verse: “How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation.” Elder John L. Clifton from Jno. 14 Chap. 2 verse: “In my Father's house, etc.” Elder Thos. J. Latham from I Thess. 5 chap. part of 23 verse: “And I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of Lord Jesus Christ.”

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS BELONGING
TO THE BETHEL CONFERENCE

Henry SmithWilliam Latham
Benj. ParrottThos. J. Latham
Thos. C. BakerJeremiah Rowe





Nathaniel WeeksF. B. Silverthorn
Robert BondWm. R. Fulshire
Thomas ReavisDavid Watson
James LewisWm. Magowns
Willie T. MobleyJohn Powell
Wm. C. GardnerWilson Daniels
Benj. WeeksJohn M. Gurganus
John H. DixonNathan Stancill
John L. CliftonHenry Williams
Jordan Cox

In consequence of indisposition Elder John H. Dixon failed to prepare a Circular Letter to be attached to these minutes. Within a day or two after the rise of the Bethel Conference he closed his mortal career, after a severe and protracted illness of many weeks. By the death of this amiable and pious preacher of the Gospel, our Conference has been deprived of one of its brightest ornaments; society, of one of its worthiest citizens; the churches over which he presided, of an eloquent and zealous Bishop; his widow and children, of an affectionate and tender husband and parent. Having lived the life of the Christian, he died the death of the righteous—Our loss is his gain. Requiescat in pace. Amen.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE, HELD AT
HOOKERTON, GREENE COUNTY, N. C., ON THE
10TH, 11TH, 12TH, AND 13TH OF OCTOBER,
1844.

Thursday, Oct. 10th. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference met at Hookerton, Greene County, N. C. At 12 o'clock according to an arrangement of the last Conference, Elder Henry Smith preached the introductory sermon from Heb. 2 chap. 3 verse, “How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation.” Conference was then organized by choosing Elder Thomas J. Latham, Moderator, and Brother Winsor Dixon, Assistant Moderator. The appointment of Clerks was postponed to the following day.





On motion, agreed, that Elders Henry Smith and Wm. Magowns and Bro. Winsor Dixon, be a Committee to supply the stage with preachers during this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren Elias Turnage and Jacob McCotter be a Committee of Finance, to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer and report to Conference.

On motion, agreed, that conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder Robert Bond.

Friday, October 11. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder John L. Clifton.

On motion, the letters from the churches was called for, read, and accepted. The amount of contributions, number of members in fellowship, etc. were as follows on pages 30 and 31.

The committee of finance submitted the following report, which was confirmed by the Conference.

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$21.35
To amount of contributions this year22.50
CONTRACR.
By amount paid for transcribing and printing the minutes for last year$15.00
By balance on hand$28.85

On motion of Elder Henry Smith, agreed, that the following churches of Christ be received into this Conference, viz: Ware Creek Church in Carteret County; Chocowinity Church in Beaufort County; and Broad Creek Church in Craven County.

On motion of Elder Latham, agreed, that the church of Christ at North Creek, in Beaufort County, be received into this Conference.

On motion of Elder J. L. Clifton, agreed, that Conference now proceed to examine the list of preachers—whereupon the names of Thomas Reavis, Wilson Daniels, Henry W. Mears, and Jeremiah Rowe were ordered to be discontinued on the list of preachers belonging to this Conference.





On motion, agreed that Brethren James F. Latham and Seth H. Tyson, be enrolled among the preachers of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Bro. Jacob Tench be enrolled among the preachers of this Conference, in compliance with the request of the church at Welche's Creek, Martin County.

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.ContriButions
JonesPleasant Hill85$
LenoirWheat SwampParrott M. Hardy1231902.00
LenoirWoodenton315
PittGum Swamp69
GreeneHart'sElias Turnage131.50
GreeneHookertonWinsor Dixon1282.00
CravenConcordJacob McCotter273681.75
CravenLittle Swift CreekDavid Gaskins111802.00
CravenBay River35
CravenGoose Creek61
CravenPost OakBy Letter38.50
CravenBroad CreekBy Letter311.50
CravenBethanyBy Letter4356
CravenBay Creek34
SampsonPiney GroveH. D. Lewis314112933.00
SampsonRowan38
JohnstonMill CreekUriah Langston7131381.25
BeaufortPungoWm. Davis, Sr.323821.00
BeaufortConcordJosephus Latham569341461.00
BeaufortBeaver DamSilas Ange548.50
BeaufortSouth CreekBy Letter228.75
BeaufortDurham'sBy Letter46.75
BeaufortJone's Bay34
BeaufortNorth Creek20
BeaufortChocowinityBy Letter1221.00
MartinWelche's Cr.By Letter2911621.00
HydeCurrituckBy Letter3925.50
CarteretWare Cr.By Letter12.50
AMOUNT52481311241,797$ 22.50

On motion of Elder John L. Clifton, voted, that the next Conference be held at Piney Grove, M. H., Sampson County, and that it commence on the Thursday before the second Lord's Day in October 1845.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to preach the introductory sermon at next Conference, and, on his failure, Elder John L. Clifton.





On motion, agreed, that 800 copies of these minutes be printed and distributed.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 11 o'clock, A. M. Prayer, etc. by Elder Henry Smith.

Saturday, Oct. 12. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Benjamin Parrott.

On motion of Elder Benj. Parrott, Elders John P. Dunn and Thomas Moore were invited and took seats in Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare these minutes for the press, superintend the printing, and distribute them by mail, or otherwise, at his expense.

On motion, agreed, that the treasurer be instructed to pay over to Elder Thomas J. Latham, the amount of funds in hand, to pay for transcribing, printing, and distributing these minutes.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare a Circular to be read in the next Conference, and, if approved, attached to the minutes of the same.

On motion of Elder B. Parrott, the following preamble and resolution were offered by Elder Robert Bond, and unimously adopted by the Conference.

Whereas union among the Disciples of Christ is desirable, as it is in accordance with the will of God, and tends to the advancement of Christianity among mankind: and whereas this Conference believes there is a number of churches of Christ in this state, that, with us, take the Holy Scriptures alone, as their infallible guide in religion: Wherefore,

Resolved: That this conference propose a Convention for the purpose of effecting a union between the Churches of Christ represented in this Conference, and such other Churches of Christ as are willing to unite on “The Faith once delivered to the Saints,”





Resolved: That the said Convention be at Hookerton, Greene County, North Carolina, and that it commence on the Friday before the first Lord's Day in May, 1845.

Resolved: That the following persons requested to attend said Convention in behalf of this Conference, viz: Elders Thomas J. Latham, John L. Clifton, Henry Smith, Benjamin Parrott, Robert Bond, William Magowns; and Brethren: Seth H. Tyson, Winsor Dixon, Reuben Barrow, David Lewis, Jacob McCotter, Abraham Baker, Joel Joyner, Jr., Laban Wilkinson, and Henry D. Lewis; and that they report the proceedings of said Convention to the next Conference, for its satisfaction.

Resolved: That Elder Robert Bond be requested to visit such Churches of Christ as take the Holy Scriptures alone as their Rule of Faith and Practice, and invite them to meet us by delegates in said Convention, in order to promote a Christian Union.

On motion agreed, that the thanks of this Conference be tendered to the inhabitants of Hookerton and its vicinity, for their kindness and hospitality.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder Robert Bond.

THOS. J. LATHAM, Moderator.

REUBEN BARROW, Clerk.

The stage was occupied as follows, viz:

Friday, Oct. 11. Bro. Benj. Weeks preached from Isaiah 28th chap. 16 verse, “Therefore thus saith the Lord God,” etc. Bro. Seth H. Tyson, from Psalms 42 chap. 11, “Hope thou in God.”

Saturday, Oct. 12. Elder John L. Clifton preached from I Cor. 6th chap. 9 verse, “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.” Elder John P. Dunn, from Heb. 5 chap. 8, 9 verse, “Though he was a Son,” etc.

Lord's Day, Oct. 13. Elder Thomas J. Latham preached from Eph. 4 chap. 5 verse, “One Lord, one faith, one baptism.”





Elder Robert Bond from Joshua 24 chap. 15 verse, “If it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord,” etc. Prayer, etc. by Elder H. Smith.

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF BETHEL
CONFERENCE

Henry SmithWm. C. Gardner
Benj. ParrottNathan Stancill
James LewisNat'l Weeks
Willie T. MobleyJacob Tench
Thomas J. LathamWm. Magowns
W. R. FulshireJohn Powell
David WatsonWm. Latham
Seth H. TysonJohn M. Gurganus
Robert BondThos. C. Baker
John L. CliftonBenj. Weeks
Jordan CoxJames F. Latham
F. B. Silverthorn

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE, AND
UNION MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST,
HELD AT PINEY GROVE M. H., SAMPSON COUNTY,
NORTH CAROLINA, ON 9TH, 10TH, 11TH, AND
12TH OF OCTOBER, 1845.

Thursday, Oct. 9th, 1845. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, met at Piney Grove, M. H., Sampson County, N. C. At 12 M. according to an arrangement of the last Conference, Elder John L. Clifton preached the introductory sermon from Acts 15 chap. 11th verse, “But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ one shall be saved, even as they.”

Conference was then organized by choosing Elder Jno. L. Clifton, Moderator and Bro. James Oats, assistant Moderator; Brother Joel Joyner, Jr., Clerk, and Bro. Henry D. Lewis, assistant Clerk.

On motion of Elder Henry Smith, agreed, that Brethren William Lewis, Stephen K. Bryan, and James Oats be a





Committee of Finance to receive contributions, settle with the treasurer, and report to conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Benj. Parrott, and Brethren James R. Lewis, Walter Dunn, and James Oats, be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during the conference.

On motion of Elder R. Bond, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow, 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder John Powell.

Friday, Oct. 10. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder Henry Smith.

On motion of Elder B. Parrott, agreed, that Bro. Walter Kennedy be appointed Treasurer pro tem of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John L. Clifton, and Brethren James R. Lewis and John Boyt be a Committee to wait on the church at Rowan, and ascertain whether or not said church wishes to be retained in our connection, and report to our next Annual Conference.

On motion, agreed to, the letters from the churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number of members in fellowship, amount of contributions, etc. were as follows: [See tables for this year.]

At the Bethel Conference held at Hookerton, Greene County, North Carolina, in October 1844 the following preamble and resolutions were passed by that body, viz:

“Whereas union among the disciples of Christ is desirable, as it is in accordance with the will of God, and tends to the advancement of Christianity among mankind: and whereas this Conference believes there is a number of churches of Christ in the state that with us take the Holy Scriptures alone as their infallible guide, in religion, therefore,

“Resolved, that this Conference propose a Convention for the purpose of effecting a union between the churches of Christ represented in this Conference, and such other churches of Christ as are willing to unite on “The Faith once delivered to the Saints.”





“Resolved, that said Convention be held at Hookerton, Greene County, N. C., and that it commence on the Friday before the 1st Lord's Day in May 1845.

“Resolved, that the following persons be requested to attend said Convention in behalf of this Conference, viz: Elders Thomas J. Latham, John L. Clifton, Henry Smith, Benjamin Parrott, Robert Bond, and William Magowns; and Brethren Seth H. Tyson, Winsor Dixon, Reuben Barrow, David Lewis, Jacob McCotter, Abraham Baker, Joel Joyner, Jr., Laban Wilkinson, and Henry D. Lewis; and that they report the proceedings of said Convention to the next Conference for its ratification.

In conformity with the above resolutions, “Delegates met in Hookerton, Greene County, N. C. on the second of May 1845, from the Bethel Conference and also from the Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ; and taking into consideration the importance of Christian Union in order to the conversion of the world to pure and undefiled religion, after a free interchange of views on both sides, agreed, that the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ should unite and form one body, upon the following conditions, viz: That the annual meeting shall hereafter be known by the name of “The Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ”; that the Churches composing said “Bethel Conference and Union Meeting” shall claim no other name than that of Churches of Christ; and that they shall take the Bible alone as their only Rule of Faith and Practice, and discard as entirely useless, all human creeds, traditions, or commandments of uninspired men.”

“On motion of Elder John L. Clifton, the following preamble and resolutions were adopted by the Conference.

“Whereas this Conference deems it necessary for the advancement of Christianity, that we dispense with the Articles of Faith, which have formerly been used by us, and that we take the whole volume of the Scriptures as they are, viz: The Bible, to be our Rule of Faith and Practice.

“Therefore, Resolved, that we take the Bible to be our only rule and guide of faith and practice; and that hereafter





we bear the appellation of Christians, or Disciples of Christ; and our churches, the churches of Christ, and that our annual, or General Conference bear the name of “Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ; and that we recommend these resolutions to be received and adopted by all our sister churches.

“Resolved, that the above preamble and resolutions, passed by our last Annual Conference, and then passed by the Convention at Hookerton, Greene County, N. C. on 2nd of May 1845, be received, ratified and adopted by this conference.”

The Committee of Finance submitted the following report, which was confirmed by the Conference.

TREASURERDR.
The balance on hand last year$28.85
To amount of contributions this year33.30
$62.15
CONTRACR.
By amount paid for transcribing, printing and forwarding the minutes last year$28.85
By Balance on hand$33.30

On motion, agreed to adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder John P. Dunn.

Saturday, October 11. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder R. Bond.

On motion of Elder H. Smith, agreed, that conference proceed to examine the list of preachers. Whereupon the name of Elder David Watson was erased in consequence of his death.

On motion of Elder H. Smith, agreed, that the names of Brethren Wm. H. Schenck and Jno. B. Gaylord be enrolled on the list of preachers.

On motion of Elder B. Parrott, agreed, that the names of Elders Jno. P. Dunn and Willie T. Nobles be entered on our list of preachers.

On motion of Elder Jno. L. Clifton, agreed, that this Conference do recommend to the separate churches of





Christ composing the same, the propriety of sending two or three delegates each, to represent them in our Annual Conference.

On motion of Elder B. Parrott, agreed, that Bro. Joel Joyner, Jr. be requested to prepare these minutes for the press, contract for printing the same, and distribute them by mail, or otherwise, at his expense.

On motion, agreed, that 1000 copies of these minutes be printed and distributed, and that the Treasurer protem be instructed to pay over to Bro. J. Joyner, Jr. the amount of funds in his hands to pay for transcribing, printing and distributing the same.

On motion, agreed, that our next Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, be held at Post Oak, M. H. (Swift Creek Bridge) Craven County, N. C. to commence on the Thursday before the 2nd Lord's Day in October 1846.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Robert Bond be requested to preach the Introductory sermon at our next Annual Conference, and on his failure, Elder Thomas J. Latham.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John P. Dunn be requested to write a Circular Letter to be read at our next Annual Conference, and if approved, annexed to the minutes, etc.

On motion of Elder B. Parrott, agreed, that this conference do tender thanks to the inhabitants of the vicinity of Piney Grove for their kindness and hospitality.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn to time and place above stated. Prayer, etc. by Elder B. Parrott.

JOHN L. CLIFTON, Moderator.

JOEL JOYNER, JR., Clerk.

The stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, October 10. Elder John Powell preached from Rev. 22 chap. 17, “And the spirit and the bride say come,” etc. Elder Robert Bond, from Acts. 27 chap. 28 v., “Then Agrippa said unto Paul, almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.”





Saturday, Oct. 11. Elder John P. Dunn preached from Mat. 9 chap. part of 12 v., “They that be whole need not a physician.” Elder Henry Smith, from Rom. 13 c 1-2, “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers,” etc.

Lord's Day, Oct. 12. Elder B. Parrott introduced divine service by prayer, etc. Elder Robert Bond preached from Isaiah 1 c 1st clause of 18 v, “Come now and let us reason together saith the Lord.” Elder John P. Dunn, from 2 Cor. 5 chap. 20 v, “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ,” etc. Prayer, etc. by Elder Henry Smith.

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF THE
BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION MEETING
OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

Henry SmithSeth H. Tyson
James R. LewisBenj. Parrott
Nathan StancilJohn Powell
Wm. H. SchenckWm. C. Gardner
William MagownsJacob Trench
Wm. LathamJordan Cox
Thos. J. LathamWm. R. Fulshire
John P. DunnJohn B. Gaylord
F. B. SilverthornWillie T. Mobley
Nathaniel WeeksBenj. Weeks
Robert BondWillie T. Nobles
John L. CliftonJohn M. Gurganus
Thos. C. BakerJames F. Latham

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampWalter Kennedy8123175$ 2.00
GreeneHart's M. H.By Letter151.00
GreeneHookertonJas. Albritton94411.00
CravenConcordWm. Lewis6122702.50
CravenLittle Swift CreekHardy Powell14662.00
CravenPost OakAllen Anderson6441.30
CravenBroad CreekBy Letter231353.00
CravenBethanyJ. P. Paul1051633.00
CravenBay CreekJ. B. Flowers301.50
SampsonPiney GroveWilliam Darden3312923.00
SampsonRowan38





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
JohnstonMill CreekAaron Lee7131140$ 2.00
BeaufortChocowinityBy Letter271.25
BeaufortPungo82
BeaufortBeaver Dam48
BeaufortConcord146
BeaufortSouth Creek28
BeaufortDurham's Creek46
BeaufortJones’ Bay34
BeaufortNath Creek20
MartinWelche's Creek62
HydeCurrituck25
CarteretWare CreekBy Letter15.75
PittGum Swamp40
PittFellow's ChapelBy Letter501.00
PittRountreesJohn P. Dunn2402.00
JonesPleasant HillJohn Jarmon321811.50
JonesChinquapin ChapelBy Letter12462.00
LenoirWoodentonBy Letter215.50
LenoirKinstonJohn A. Parrott6452.00
AMOUNT177798161,859$ 33.30

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
POST OAK M. H. ON SWIFT CREEK, CRAVEN
COUNTY, N. C., OCTOBER 1846.

Thursday, Oct. 8, 1846. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, met at Post Oak M. H., Craven County, N. C. At 12 o'clock, according to an arrangement of the last Conference, and in consequence of the indisposition of Elder Robert Bond, Elder Thos. J. Latham preached the introductory sermon, from John 14 c 6 v, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father but by me.”

Conference was then organized by choosing Bro. Winsor Dixon, Moderator; and Bro. Joel Joyner, Jr., Clerk.

On motion, agreed: That Elder Henry Smith and Brethren Charles Joyner and Abraham Baker, be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during the Conference.





On motion, agreed that Brethren Jacob McCotter and Augustine Latham be appointed to receive the contributions of the churches, settle with the Treasurer, and report to Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 A. M. Prayer, etc. by Elder John Powell.

Friday, Oct. 9. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Bro. John Jarman.

On motion, the letters from the churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number of members in fellowship, amount of contributions, etc. were as follows: [See tables for this year.]

On motion of Elder Thomas J. Latham, agreed, that Bro. Jesse Swanner, a member from the Church of Christ at Old Ford, in Beaufort County, be invited to take a seat in this Conference.

On motion, the circular letter prepared by Elder John P. Dunn, at the request of the last Conference, was read, approved and ordered to be published with these minutes.

On motion, agreed, that the next Conference be held at Pleasant Hill, in Jones County; and that it commence the Thursday before the first Lord's Day in November, 1847.

The committee of Finance submitted the following report, which was confirmed by Conference.

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$33.30
To amount of contributions this year41.05
$74.35
To balance on hand last year$33.30
and distributing the minutes last year33.30
Balance on hand$41.05

On motion, agreed, that Bro. Winsor Dixon be requested to prepare a Circular letter to be read at our next Conference, and if approved, attached to the minutes of the same.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John P. Dunn be requested to preach the introductory sermon at our next Conference, and on his failure Elder Wm. H. Schenck.





On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare these minutes for the press, pay for the printing, and distribute them by mail or otherwise at his expense.

On motion, agreed, that one thousand copies of these minutes be printed and that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to Elder Thos. J. Latham the amount of funds in his hands, to pay for transcribing, printing and distributing the same.

On motion, the list of preachers was called for and examined. Whereupon the names of Willie T. Mobley and Benj. Weeks were ordered to be discontinued in consequence of their death; that of Jordan Cox for having withdrawn from this conference and uniting with the Methodists; and that of Wm. C. Gardner for having united with the Missionary Baptists.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John A. Leggett, and Brethren John Jarman, and E. S. F. Giles, be added to the list of Elders, etc. of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at half past nine o'clock; prayer, etc. by Elder Robert Bond.

Saturday, Oct. 10. Conference met according to adjournment; prayer, etc. by Bro. John B. Gaylord.

On motion of Elder Thomas J. Latham, agreed, that this Conference appoint Elders John P. Dunn and W. H. Schenck to attend the Union Association of North Carolina, at its session in 1847 for the purpose of opening a friendly correspondence and continuing a brotherly intercourse between this Conference and the said association. Also agreed, that the said messengers carry twenty copies of the minutes of this Conference for 1845 and 1846 for the use of said Association.

On motion, agreed, that Elders John P. Dunn, and Thomas J. Latham, and Bro. Charles Joyner be appointed a committee to receive contributions from churches and individuals, by subscription or otherwise, for the purpose of employing one or more evangelists to travel in the





bounds of the Conference for the ensuing year, and that they report to the next Conference the amount received by them as committee as aforesaid; and how they have appropriated the same.

On motion, agreed, that conference affectionately recommend the following plan of co-operation to such churches and individuals as may be desirous to contribute to the support of one or more evangelists to travel and preach the gospel in the bounds of this connection, viz: That each church appoint some individual to obtain subscriptions, payable by installments, to the orders of said committee, John P. Dunn, Thomas J. Latham and Charles Joyner, or either of them; the first instalment to be due when an evangelist shall have been appointed by said committee, and not before. And that the individuals holding the several subscriptions payable as aforesaid, inform the said committee or any one of them, as to the amount subscribed, in order that they may proceed to select evangelists without unnecessary loss of time.

On motion, agreed, that this conference tender their thanks to the inhabitants of the vicinity of Post Oak M. H. for their hospitality and kindness.

On motion, agreed, that conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder Henry Smith.

WINSOR DIXON, Moderator.

JOEL JOYNER, JR., Clerk.

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampDrury Hill45172$ 2.00
LenoirWoodentonBy Letter1126.50
LenoirKinstonBy Letter11452.00
GreeneHookertonJesse Hart, Wm. Ormond111402.00
GreeneOak GroveAbram Baker1161.00
CravenConcordJac. McCotter, Sol. Caraway984722.00
CravenLittle Swift CreekR. Rand, D. Gaskins, T. Purifoy3971683.30





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contri-Butions
CravenPost OakWal Warren, W. J. Carawan201362$ 2.00
CravenBroad CreekA. Cutheral, Wm. Barrington3611433.00
CravenBethanySamuel Willis521665.00
CravenBay CreekBy Letter921361.00
SampsonPiney GroveW. N. Rose292
JohnstonMill CreekJ. Joyner, Jr., W. G. Bissel71111442.00
BeaufortOld FordJesse Swanner41201601.50
BeaufortChocowinityH. Winfield, Jarl Wall2271.25
BeaufortPungoLaban Wilkinson6212851.50
BeaufortBeaver Dam48
BeaufortConcordD. L. Burgess, Sam Windley7113381112.00
BeaufortSouth Creek28
BeaufortNath Creek20
MartinWelche's CreekWillie Moore, Don Ange31486661.00
CarteretWare CreekJ. B. Guthrie, Read S. Jones241.00
PittGum Swamp40
PittFellow's ChapelG. S. Blount, Ch. Moore, R. Weatherington261692.00
PittRountrees M. H.Charles Joyner14372.00
JonesPleasant HillJo. Kinsey, Jno. Jarman1801.50
JonesChinquapin ChapelBy Letter2441.50
AMOUNT382381753391,921$ 41.05

N.B. The Stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, Oct. 9. Elder James F. Latham preached from Eph. 4 c 14 v, “Where-fore he saith, wake thou that sleepest,” etc. Elder Jno. B. Gaylord, from I Kings 18 c. 21, “And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, how long halt ye between two opinions? If the Lord be God follow Him.”

Saturday, October 10. Elder John P. Dunn preached from Heb. 5 c. 9 v, “And being made perfect he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” Elder Wm. H. Schenck, from Acts 17 c. 23 v, “For





as I passed by and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD.”

Lord's Day, Oct. 11. Elder Wm. H. Schenck commenced worship by prayer, etc. Elder Thomas J. Latham preached from Jno. 17 c 21, 22 v, “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word.”

Elder John P. Dunn from Gen. 24 c 49 v, “And now if ye will deal kindly and truly with my Master, tell me; and if not, tell me; that I may turn to the right hand or the left.” Elder Henry Smith closed by prayer, etc.

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF THE
BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION MEETING
OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

Henry SmithJohn A. Leggett
John L. CliftonWm. R. Fulshire
James R. LewisJacob Tench
Thomas J. LathamJohn B. Gaylord
Willie T. NoblesRobert Bond
Nathan StancillJohn Powell
James F. LathamWilliam Latham
Fred B. SilverthornWm. H. Schenck
E. S. F. GilesThomas C. Baker
Wm. MagoundsNath'l Weeks
Benj. ParrottSeth H. Tyson
John M. GurganusJohn Jarman
Jno. P. Dunn

CIRCULAR LETTER

“Even so hath God ordained, that they who preach the Gospel should live of the Gospel,” I Cor. 9 Chap. 14 verse.

Beloved Brethren in Christ:

At your last Annual Conference, held at Piney Grove, Sampson County, N. C., Oct. 1845, it was agreed that the humble individual who now addresses you, “be requested to prepare a Circular to be read at our next Annual Conference,





and if approved, to be annexed to the Minutes of the same.”

Amidst the various subjects to which the attention of the churches composing this Annual meeting, have heretofore been, and may yet be called, I have been unable to think of none more important to our well being and prosperity as a body of Christians, than that which stands at the head of this Circular—I mean the support of the Gospel.

Permit me here to remark, that I am not unapprised of the extreme sensibility felt by some religious people whenever this subject is touched; while others equally conscientious, appear to be anxious to investigate it and learn their duty in relation thereto. That an honest difference of opinion on this subject has heretofore existed, and may still exist, among truly religious people, the writer does not doubt; and he would therefore desire to approach it with caution, having, as he believes, a due regard to the feelings and opinions of all. He is the more encouraged to call your attention to this most interesting topic, from the consideration that he is addressing those who profess to believe in the use of the divinely appointed means for the enjoyment of that salvation, purchased for the perishing guilty by the blood of Christ. It remains, therefore, for us to make our practice consistant with our theory, by using the means graciously provided for the accomplishment of that most desirable end.

First, then, the question fairly presents itself before us and claims our sincere attention; what is the divinely appointed means for the conversion of the world to Christianity? The only scriptural answer which can be given is, that “the Gospel of Christ is the power of God unto Salvation, to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first; and also to the Greek,” Rom. 1 c. 16 v. Hence the command of the Savior to “go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature,” because it is adapted to the needs and want of all. But, in order that they may enjoy it, it becomes necessary that it should be preached, that they might hear it, believe it, and reduce it to practice; and thus it might be available to their relief from





the bondage of sin. For all theories stand in the same relation to practice that the shadow does to the substance; in them we have the representation of things, but not the things themselves. In the Gospel preached, we have the theory of salvation; in it believed and obeyed we have the reality or enjoyment. This position is fully verified in the conversion of both Jew and Gentile. See Acts 2 and 10 chap. where Peter preached the Gospel; the people heard it, believed it, obeyed it, or reduced it to practice, and thereby the most blissful effects of it—Their liberation from sin, and the good hope, through grace, of a blessed immortality. This Gospel presents to all the blood of Christ as the purchasing or procuring cause of man's salvation—of remission of sin: For where there is no remission of sins there is no salvation; and where there is no shedding of blood there is no remission of sins. Heb. 9 chap. 2 verse. But we have been speaking now particularly of the means of enjoyment, not of the purchase or procurement.

Secondly—We will consider the human agency necessarily employed in proclaiming the Gospel, in order to its being heard, believed, obeyed, and enjoyed. That our Lord proclaimed it originally through the agency of man, can not be doubted by those who believe the New Testament to be the truth. Because we are expressly informed therein, that our Savior, after His resurrection, commanded His apostles to “go into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature,” etc.

That a continuation of the ministry of the Word, through the agency of man is necessary NOW for the salvation of man, I apprehend no one will deny who believes that God works by means to effect the salvation of our race. This view is clearly set forth, and forcibly argued by the Apostle Paul in his Epistle to the Romans 10 c 14-17 v, “How shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe on him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?” So, then, “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” That the Savior of sinners makes use of men as agents to proclaim the glad





tidings to the perishing guilty, we believe will be readily admitted by all; and therefore we deem it a work of superogation to produce further proof in support of it.

But, in order to preach the Gospel to others, with success, it is a fact not to be denied, that the preacher ought first to understand it correctly himself; and to understand the Gospel correctly himself he must do as Paul directed Timothy—“Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.” Without a close application to the study of the good Book which contains the Christian Religion, no man, however learned in other respects, will be prepared rightly to divide the word of truth; or proclaim understandingly to his fellow men, the glad tidings of salvation. It is an error fraught with much mischief, to suppose that the preacher, is now inspired, or taught by the Holy Spirit, WITHOUT THE WORD OF TRUTH, as in the early days of Christianity. THEN, indeed, the Holy Spirit brought all things to his remembrance, and what he should speak, without the written word of truth; but now the Holy Spirit gives this most gracious information by the word of truth. In other words, the Holy Spirit THEN taught the Apostle by immediate inspiration; HE NOW teaches the preacher the same truth by the Scriptures. So teaches the Apostle 2 Tim. 3 c. 17 v, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” So then the preacher of the present day is, or ought to be, taught by inspiration of God, as well as the Apostles of Christ were. The latter, the Apostles, DIRECTLY; the former, INDIRECTLY; the apostles by the Holy Spirit sent down from Heaven on the day of Pentecost—the Spirit of inspiration. It therefore becomes necessary for the proclaimer of the Gospel in our day to give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine, to meditate on these things, and give himself wholly to them, that his profiting may be apparent to all, I Tim. 4c, 15v. Pursuing this course we have every reason to suppose that God will





bless the means of his own appointment (when used with pure motives) to the attainment of a very desirable end—a correct knowledge of the Gospel plan of man's salvation.

The duty of supporting the Gospel ministry is apparent, both from reason and the Scriptures. If it is the duty of the Minister of the Gospel to give himself wholly to the work, it is evident that he cannot derive his support from his own efforts in pecuniary matters. That he must have food and raiment for himself and his family, if he has one, is equally clear. That the preacher of the Gospel has been doomed by his Master to a mere pittance for life, while the education of his children, and the necessary provision for his family are neglected, no rational man can believe. Who then is bound to support the minister of the Gospel, and enable him to do justice to his family? Reason answers—the government that employs him as its minister—the Church of Christ.

The Scriptures answer—“The laborer is worthy of his hire.” “Who goeth at a warfare at his own charges?” “Who planteth a vine-yard and eateth not of the fruit thereof?” Or “who feedeth a flock and eateth not of the milk of the flock?” “If we (the ministers of the Gospel) have sown unto you spiritual things” (the good seed of the Gospel) “is it a great thing if we shall reap of your carnal things?” The Apostle proves, illustrates, and enforces this duty by referring to the law of Moses: “Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn.” Do ye not know that they who minister about holy things, live of the things of the Temple?” “And they which wait at the altar, are not they partakers with the altar? Even so hath God ORDAINED that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.” From the whole of the Apostles’ teaching in this chapter as well as in other places, it appears to the writer that the duty of CHRISTIANS, in relation to the support of the Gospel ministry is placed beyond the possibility of a doubt—the case is made so plain, that is not NOW debateable.

In conclusion the writer would remark, that the way in which as Christians we are to discharge this most important duty, seems not to be particularly marked out in





the Scriptures, and therefore necessarily calls for the exercise of wisdom, prudence, and sound discretion, in selecting the plan of operation most consistant with the means at our disposal, and the circumstances with which we are surrounded. With all due deference to the opinions and views of all concerned, we would suggest the practicability and propriety of a mutual co-operation of all the churches composing our annual conference, for the purpose of supporting evangelists to travel and proclaim the glad tidings of salvation to the people so far, at least, as our means will enable us to do so. And while I utterly repudiate the idea of an annual (or any other) meeting for the purpose of drawing up creeds for the faith, or for legislating for the government of the Churches composing it, I can see no impropriety in conferring together about the best way of employing our means in the support and spread of the Gospel. The former in the humble judgment of the undersigned, comes not within the jurisdiction of any conference or association; the latter most assuredly does.

The united efforts of all the churches would, with divine blessings, effect much, compared with the little that can be done by individual enterprise. Be this as it may, it certainly is the duty of all, so far as God has blessed them with the means, to contribute their mite in some way, to the support and spread of the Gospel. For if it is the duty of any one, the same law or rule of Scripture which binds one, will bind all according to their several abilities.

The exigency of the times calls aloud upon every lover of the TRUTH to step forward and do his duty. We claim, my beloved Brethren, to be standing upon original ground—to be guided in our religious course by the BIBLE. If so, we cannot fail to see and feel the importance of doing our duty.

We have nearly two thousand members belonging to the churches composing the Bethel Conference, and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ. Suppose each member were to contribute fifty cents annually for the support of the Gospel. The sum thus raised would be sufficient





to keep at least three Evangelists in the field; and in a brief period, under the blessing of God, the number of our members might be doubled, perhaps quadrupled. But suppose three fourths of the members could not conveniently pay anything. There are at least five hundred members who could, and probably would, pay from one to ten dollars, each, annually, for the support of the Gospel, without at all feeling the burden. This kind of liberality would bring to our aid talented proclaimers of the Gospel, who, by divine assistance, might accomplish much in the cause of the redeemer. Many pious young men, with the requisite gifts and qualifications for preaching and teaching, are now confined to some honest avocation, for the support of themselves and families. They are not able to devote themselves to the ministry of the word, without pecuniary aid. Most of our preaching brethren are past, are on, or near the meridian of life, and cannot be expected, in the common course of human events to continue much longer in the Gospel field.

Beloved Brethren, what shall be done in this matter? Shall the cause which we love so much, languish and pine away among us for want of our pecuniary aid? We trust it shall not. We hope that our hearts and purses shall be freely opened, and our hands will liberally contribute to sustain a faithful Gospel Ministry. We are as much bound by the law of Christ, to pay this debt, as we are by the laws of North Carolina to pay taxes for the support of government. If this be not so the writers of the New Testament have misguided us on this subject.

With a sincere desire to promote the welfare and prosperity of all the churches, which compose this annual conference IN PARTICULAR; and the true cause of original apostolic Christianity, in letter and spirit, in principle and practice, IN GENERAL; the writer begs leave to submit the above suggestion for your consideration—praying the Great Head of the Church to guide us with the call of truth, and add a blessing to our feeble efforts in the greatest and best of causes. May grace, mercy, and peace abide with us all now, henceforth, and forever, for Christ's sake—AMEN.

JOHN P. DUNN.





MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
PLEASANT HILL M. H., JONES COUNTY, N. C.,
NOVEMBER, 1847.

Thursday, November 4, 1847. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ met at Pleasant Hill M. H., Jones County, N. C. At 12 M., according to the arrangement of the last Conference, Elder John P. Dunn, preached the Introductory Sermon from I Cor. 15 c 58 v, “Therefore my loved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, for as much as ye know your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”

Conference was then organized by appointing Elder Thos. J. Latham, Moderator; Elder John L. Clifton, assistant Moderator; and Brother Joel Joyner, Jr., Clerk.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren John H. Dillahunt and Josephus Latham be appointed to receive the contributions of the churches, settle with the treasurer, and report to conference.

On motion, agreed that Elders Henry Smith, John Powell and John Jarman be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at ten o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder Henry Smith.

Friday, Nov. 5. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder W. H. Schenck.

On motion the letters from the churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number of members in fellowship, amount of contributions, etc. were as follows: [See tables for this year.]

On motion, of Elder W. H. Schenck, agreed, that the church of Christ at Atkinson's Chapel in Craven County, be received into this Conference.

On motion of Elder Henry Smith, agreed, that the name of Brother Thomas H. Bowen be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.





On motion, Elders Dunn and Schenck were permitted to state their reasons for not attending the Union Association at its session in 1847, etc. which reasons were unanimously approved.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare a Circular Letter to be attached to the Minutes of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Robert Bond be requested to prepare a Circular Letter to be read in our next Conference, and if approved, attached to the minutes.

On motion, voted, that the next annual session of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ be held at Mill Creek M. H., Johnston County, and that it commence on the Thursday before the first Lord's Day in November 1848.

On motion, the committee of Finance submitted the following report, which was approved by the Conference.

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$41.05
To contributions this year43 60
CONTRACR.
By amount paid for printing, distributing, etc., minutes last year$31.05
To balance on hand$53.60

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare these minutes for the press, pay the printer, and distribute them by mail or otherwise.

On motion, agreed, that 1500 copies of these minutes be printed, and that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to Elder T. J. Latham the funds in his hands to pay for transcribing, printing, and distributing the same.

On motion, agreed, that the Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder Robert Bond.

Saturday, Nov. 6. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder B. Parrott.

On motion of Elder B. Parrott, agreed, that this conference invite the preaching brethren from other states to





attend our next Annual Conference to be held at Mill Creek, Johnston County, and that the traveling expenses of those who may favor us with their attendance, be defrayed by the Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Robert Bond be requested to preach the introductory sermon at our next Conference, and on his failure, Elder Wm. H. Schenck.

The Committee, Elders John P. Dunn, Thomas J. Latham, and Brother Charles Joyner, appointed by the last Conference to receive contributions, and employ one or more evangelists to travel and preach the Gospel within the bounds of this Conference, submitted the following:

REPORT

That upon explaining to the Churches the object of the resolutions appointing said Committee, etc. they have mostly manifested a spirit of liberality, fully equal to their ability: and some of them have actually deposited funds in the hands of their own Treasurer to be ready when called for. The committee, having hitherto been unable to obtain a suitable evangelist have not received nor called for contributions from any person.

On motion, agreed, that the aforesaid committee, composed of Elders John P. Dunn and Thomas J. Latham and Bro. Charles Joyner, be reappointed for the ensuing year, and that they be invested with the same powers, and be required to perform the same duties as were designated and enjoined by the last conference in 1846.

On motion, the list of Elders and preachers belonging to this Conference was called for and examined.

On motion, agreed that the name of Elder Wm. Magounds be discontinued in consequence of his death.

On motion, agreed, that the names of Thos. C. Baker and Fred B. Silverthorne be discontinued, they having united with the Free Will Baptists.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder Nathan Stancill be discontinued, he having long since moved beyond the bounds of the state.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Bro. John H. Dillahunt be enrolled on the list of preachers.





On motion, agreed, that this conference do affectionately and earnestly recommend that the evangelists, Elders, etc. use every lawful means for the suppression of intemperance.

On motion, agreed, that this conference do recommend to the churches the adoption of the “Christian Hymn Book.”

On motion of Bro. Joel Joyner, Jr., agreed, that Elder Thos. J. Latham be authorized to pay over to Elder Henry Smith, for his own use, the balance of funds in his hands after paying for printing and distributing these minutes.

On motion, agreed, that this conference tender their thanks to the inhabitants in the vicinity of Pleasant Hill M. H., for their hospitality and kindness.

On motion agreed, that this conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder Henry Smith.

THOMAS J. LATHAM, Moderator.

JOEL JOYNER, JR., Clerk.

N. B. The Stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, November 5, 1847. Elder John Powell preached from John 2 c 5 v, “Whatever he saith unto you do it.” Elder John A. Leggett from Mark 16 c 15, 16 v, “Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature, etc.” Elder John L. Clifton from Rom 1 c 16 v, “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto Salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”

Saturday, Nov. 6. Elder B. Parrott preached from Rev. 22 c 12 v, “Beloved I come quickly and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” Elder John B. Gaylord, from Rom. 10 c 13 v, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Elder W. H. Schenck closed the services of the day.

Lord's Day, Nov. 7, 1847. Elder Thomas J. Latham preached from Eph. 5 c 25, 26 and 27 v, “Husbands love





your wives, even as Christ also loved the Church,” etc. Elder John P. Dunn, from John 8 c 36 v, “If the Son therefore, shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” Elder Henry Smith closed by prayer, etc.

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF THE
BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION MEETING
OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

Henry SmithE. S. F. Giles
John PowellJohn L. Clifton
Thos. J. LathamJohn M. Gurganus
John A. LeggettW. H. Schenck
Jas. F. LathamNath'l Weeks
Jno. JarmanSeth H. Tyson
Thos. H. BowenJohn H. Dillahunt
Robert BondBenj. Parrott
Jas. R. LewisWm. Latham
John P. DunnWillie T. Nobles
W. R. FulshireJno. B. Gaylord
Jacob Tench

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampJ. Hartsfield Pitt Hardy R. F. Hodges155164$ 2.50
LenoirWoodentonThos. Causey26.50
LenoirKinstonW. Dunn, J. A. Parrott5502.00
GreeneOak GroveAbram Baker161.00
GreeneHookertonWm. Ormond15322.00
CravenConcordBy Letter1682.00
CravenLittle Swift CreekJ. Atkins, Joe Gaskins2122542.00
CravenPost OakAllen Anderson362822.00
CravenBroad CreekJ. B. Gaylord1422532.50
CravenBethanyW.W.Broughton, Ab. Broughton101012635.00
CravenBay CreekBy Letter136.50
CravenAtkinson ChapelWm. Morris242.00
SampsonPiney GroveThos. Britt, Cola Boyette2002.10
JohnstonMill CreekJ. Joyner, Jr., J. Harper, G. Bizell431462.00





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
BeaufortOld FordJ. Swanner, J. A. Leggett65102149$ 2.00
BeaufortChocowinityBy Letter22251.00
BeaufortPungoBy Letter2222811.00
BeaufortBeaver DamBy Letter9421.00
BeaufortConcordJosephus Latham22117982.00
BeaufortSouth Creek28
MartinWelche's Creek66
CarteretWare CreekGeorge Guthrie52281.00
PittFellows ChapelG. Murphy, C. Moore, L. Gardner13822.00
PittRountreesChas. Joyner7442.00
JonesPleasant HillW. Gooding, W. Heath115642.00
JonesChinquapin ChapelW. Nobles, J. H. Dillahunt2401.50
TOTAL51283348231,761$ 43.60

CIRCULAR LETTER

“And they continued steadfastly in the Apostles’ Doctrine and fellowship, and in the breaking of bread, and in prayer”—Acts 2 chap. 42 verse.

To the members of the Churches of Christ composing the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, and to all who acknowledge the Holy Scriptures as the only authoritative creed, and book of discipline, grace, mercy and peace from God our Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.

Beloved Brethren, I cordially felicitate you that at length, such churches and individuals as are opposed to the adoption of the name, Christian, or disciple, as the proper appellation of the followers of Christ; and who have not sufficient confidence in the Word of God to rely upon it as their only sufficient rule of faith and practice, have withdrawn from our Conference, and left us free to proceed on our career towards Christian perfection, unfettered by an opposition, the result of ignorance and consequent prejudice.





The Christian professor, who believes the New Testament contains sufficient directions for the regulation and proper discharge of his religious and social duties, will necessarily study it in order to know his duty to his Creator, to his fellow creatures, and to himself. The attention of such professors is solicited while we proceed to the consideration of the Christian Church established on the day of Pentecost, in the City of Jerusalem, illuminated by the Holy Spirit, and under the immediate oversight of the divinely inspired Apostles of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

1. They continued STEADFASTLY in the APOSTLES DOCTRINE. We presume it will not be disputed that the New Testament, as it is commonly called, contains the Apostles Doctrine—that doctrine in which primitive Christians continued steadfast—which modern professors too frequently esteem as of only secondary importance. If we wish to imitate the primitive Christians, we should, as individuals, devote a portion of each day to the prayerful reading of the Apostles’ Doctrine;—as parents or heads of families, we should, every night, at least call our families, etc. around us to join in reading or hearing the Holy Scriptures;—as members of the Church of Christ, we should meet together every Lord's Day to read and converse on those living oracles;—as preachers we should be most particular to advance nothing for the pulpit except what is perfectly consistant with the written word of God. By so doing we shall exercise and improve our own devotional feelings; we shall bring up our children and domestics in the nurture and admonition of the Lord; and we shall instruct in the best possible manner, such of our brethren, etc. as are incapable of reading for themselves.

2. They continued in the Fellowship. “By the term fellowship, in this place, we suppose the writer to mean the joint weekly contributions which were voluntarily paid into the treasury of the church, for the purpose of providing bread and wine; of ministering to the wants and necessities of the aged or infirm, poor members of the





church, or neighborhood; and of sustaining evangelists to preach the Gospel to the world. This duty is too generally neglected by the church in our state. Let us endeavor to reform in this particular; recollecting that it is on this very subject the Apostle Paul says “God loveth a cheerful giver.” In passing permit us to suggest that every church should try to contribute as soon as possible, enough to build a suitable house of worship to be open to them on EVERY LORD'S DAY. Then they will have it in their power to attend weekly to their religious duties and privileges, without transgressing on the rights of others.

3. They continued, etc. in the BREAKING OF BREAD, or THE LOAF. For some reason, not readily to be accounted for, the whole of Christiandom seems, in a great degree to have lost sight of the importance of a weekly commemoration of the death, etc. of Christ, by breaking and partaking of the emblematic loaf. Yet we are assured that in the days of pure and primitive Christianity this commemorative institution was attended to on every Lord's Day. Any member of the church who failed to partake for three weeks in succession, was liable to expulsion, unless he could render a good reason for his non-attendance. We most earnestly and affectionately call the attention of Christians to the importance of this institution; and to the propriety of thus returning to the practice of Apostolic Christianity. We are happy to say that Calvin, Luther and Wesley are with us on this point.

4. They continued, etc. in PRAYER. Prayer is the appointed means of communication between the Spirit of the Christian and the Spiritual and unseen Creator. It may be divided into (1) Individual prayer; (2) Domestic prayer; (3) Social prayer.

1. Individual prayer is designed to bring us as INDIVIDUALS, into direct communication with God; to confess our personal infirmities, and to cultivate and promote personal holiness. It should be STRICTLY PRIVATE. We are commanded to pray to our Father who seeth IN SECRET. Being intended as the antagonistic





force to the constant pressure of things seen and temporal, it must be habitual and frequent. Without it no person can enjoy the fulness and blissfulness of the Christian Religion.

2. Domestic prayer is calculated to impress upon our children and dependents the importance of religion, by associating it with all the recollections of childhood, and all the sympathies of home. It gives to the parental advice the sanctions of religion, and, in after life, recalls the mind to the connection of duty to God, by all the motives drawn from a father's care, and a mother's tenderness. “It is the neglect of domestic prayer, and of reading the Scriptures in our families, which, probably cause so many of the children of professing Christians to be brought up, NOT in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.”

3. Social Prayer is one of the most important duties and privileges of the Lord's Day. It is that which was intended to be brought to the consideration of the Christian Community, by the resolution offered by our beloved brother Joel Joyner, Jr. at our last Conference. For our encouragement in the performance of this mode of worship, we are told that “if two of you shall agree on Earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father, which is in Heaven.” “For when two or three are gathered together in my name there am I in the midst of them.” Mat. 18c 19, 20v. Surely, dear brethren, with a “thus saith the Lord” in our hands, we shall not fail to find two or three, at least, in every Christian Church, who are willing to meet together every Lord's Day, for the purpose of uniting the social prayer and praise. “Let us not neglect assembling ourselves together, as the manner of some is.”

In compliance with the request of the last Conference in 1847, the undersigned has prepared the above Circular Address to his brethren. He was aware that the circumscribed limits to which he must necessarily confine himself, would not admit of a full exposition of the duties enjoined. But he was induced to hope, that it might be





beneficial to direct the attention of the Christian Community to the faith and practice of the primitive Christians. Our brethren having adopted the name of Christian, and agreed to acknowledge the Holy Scriptures as their only authoritative creed and book of discipline it became the less necessary to argue at great length the propriety of a compliance with duties so plainly inculcated in Holy Writ. That we may all be enabled to go on to Christian perfection is the sincere prayer of Yours in the hope of a blissful immortality.

Pantego, N. C.

THOMAS J. LATHAM.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
MILL CREEK M. H., JOHNSTON COUNTY, NORTH
CAROLINA, NOVEMBER, 1848.

Thursday, Nov. 2, 1848. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, met at Mill Creek M. H., Johnston County, N. C.

At 12 o'clock as Elders Bond and Schenck were absent, Elder Henry Smith preached the Introductory Sermon from Luke 18c 17v, “Verily, verily I say unto you, whosoever shall not receive the Kingdom of God as a little child, shall not enter therein.”

Conference was then organized by appointing Elder Thos. J. Latham, Moderator, and Elder John H. Dillahunt assistant Moderator; Bro. Joel Joyner, Jr., Clerk; and Elder John L. Clifton, assistant Clerk.

On motion, agreed: That Brethren Wm. G. Bizzell and Dr. Jacob A. Hartsfield be a Committee of Finance to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer, and report to this Conference.

On motion, agreed: That Elder Henry Smith and Brethren Jesse Hart and Thos. Ward, be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during this Conference.

On motion, agreed: That the preachers in attendance from other associations or Conferences be invited to take seats in this Conference.





The Committee appointed to supply the stage, etc. reported that they had selected Elders Littlejohn Utley, John A. Leggett, and Henry D. Cason, to preach on Friday.

On motion, agreed that conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder John Jarman.

Friday, Nov. 3. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder John Dupree.

On motion agreed to, the letters from the several churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number of members in fellowship, amount of contributions, etc. were as follows: [See tables for this year.]

On motion, agreed, that the church of Christ at Oak Grove in Pitt County, be received into this Conference.

On motion agreed, that the Church of Christ at Spring Creek, Beaufort County, be received into this Conference.

On motion agreed, that the Church of Christ at Beaver Creek, Cumberland County, be received into this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Long Branch, Cumberland County, be received into this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder John Dupree be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder Henry Roberson be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder Stephen D. Collins be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder Henry D. Cason be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder David H. Miller be enrolled on the list of preachers of this Conference.

On motion, the list of preachers was called over and examined.





On motion, the Committee of Finance made the following report, which was confirmed.

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$53.60
To amount of contributions this year$43.00
$96.60
CONTRACR.
By amount paid for printing, distributing, etc. 1500 copies minutes of last year$40.60
By amount paid Elder H. Smith by order of last Conference$13.00$53.60
Balance on hand$43.00

On motion, agreed, that 1500 copies of the minutes be printed for distribution.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thos. J. Latham be requested to prepare these minutes for the press, pay the printer, and distribute them by mail or otherwise.

On motion, agreed, that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to Elder Thomas J. Latham the funds on hand, to pay for transcribing, printing, and distributing these minutes.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John B. Gaylord be requested to prepare a Circular to be read in our next Annual Conference, and if approved, attached to the minutes of same.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare or select a Circular to be attached to these minutes.

On motion, agreed that the next annual session of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, be held at Kinston, Lenoir Co., N. C., and that it commence on the Thursday before first Lord's Day in November 1849.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder D. H. Miller.

The Committee to supply the Stage, etc. reported that they had selected Elders John A. Leggett, Henry D. Cason and John B. Gaylord to preach on Saturday and Elders Henry Smith, Thos. J. Latham and John Dupree on the Lord's Day.





Saturday, Nov. 4. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder H. D. Cason.

On motion, agreed that Elder John P. Dunn be requested to preach the introductory Sermon at our next Annual Conference; and on his failure, Elder John L. Clifton.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John Dupree, John L. Clifton and Stephen D. Collins, be delegated to the next Annual Meeting of the Christian Baptist Conference of North Carolina; and that they carry twenty copies of these minutes for the use of said Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thos. J. Latham be excused from serving on the Committee to employ an evangelist.

On motion, agreed that the said Committee consist for the following year of Elders John P. Dunn, John H. Dillahunt, and John Jarman; and Brother Chas. Joyner.

On motion, agreed, that this Conference do tender their thanks to the inhabitants in the vicinity of Mill Creek, M. H. for their kindness and hospitality.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder Littlejohn Utley.

THOMAS J. LATHAM, Moderator.

JOHN H. DILLAHUNT, Asst. Moderator.

JOEL JOYNER, JR., Clerk.

JOHN L. CLIFTON, Asst. Clerk.

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampDr. J. A. Hartsfield, W. T. Hart, Drury A. Hill225163$ 2.50
LenoirWoodentonBy Letter25.50
LenoirKinstonBy Letter221522.00
GreeneOak Grove16
GreeneHookertonJesse Hart, Wm. Dail12441.50
CravenConcordBy Letter682.00
CravenLittle Swift CreekJas. W. Caton452.00
CravenPost OakWm. Lancaster442863.50
CravenBroad CreekBy Letter22491.50





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
CravenBethanyBy Letter568$ 5.00
CravenBay CreekBy Letter42236.75
CravenAtkinson ChapelWm. H. Butler881392.00
SampsonPiney GroveOates L. Lewis, Thos. Britt101902.00
JohnstonMill CreekA. Lee, W. G. Bizzell, R. Taylor11211432.00
BeaufortOld FordH. Cherry, Woolard12821371.50
BeaufortChocowinityRepresented by Elder Smith530
BeaufortPungoBy Letter211781.50
BeaufortConcordBy Letter3831044.00
BeaufortBeaver Dam42
BeaufortSouth Creek28
BeaufortSpring CreekBy Letter20.75
MartinWelche's Creek66
CarteretWare Creek28
PittFellows Chapel82
PittRountreesBy Letter12412.00
PittOak GroveRichmond H. Terry11.50
JonesPleasant HillBy Letter14581.50
JonesChinquapin ChapelBy Letter1391.50
CumberlandBeaver CreekL. W. Baxley, J. H. Hays682.00
CumberlandLong BranchDan'l Jones, Step'n Pope9.50
AMOUNT20472417221,865$ 43.00

N. B. The Stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, Nov. 3. Elder John A. Leggett preached from I Sam'l 15c 14 v, “And Samuel said,” etc. Elder H. D. Cason, from 2 Pet. 2c 9v, “The Lord knoweth,” etc. Elder Littlejohn Utley, from John 5c 25v, “Verily, verily, I say, etc.”

Saturday, Nov. 4. Elder John A Leggett preached from Heb. 2c 2, 3v, “For if the word spoken,” etc. Elder H. D. Cason from Heb. 12c 25v, “See that ye refuse not him that speaketh,” etc.

Lord's Day, Nov. 5. The inclemency of the weather prevented preaching this day.





LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS BELONGING TO
THE BETHEL CONFERENCE, ETC.

1.Henry Smith15.Nath'l Weeks
2.Robert Bond16.Jas. F. Latham
3.John L. Clifton17.Jacob Tench
4.Benj. Parrott18.Seth H. Tyson
5.John Powell19.Jno. B. Gaylord
6.Jas. R. Lewis20.Jno. Jarman
7.Jno. M. Gurganus21.E. S. F. Giles
8.Wm. Latham22.John H. Dillahunt
9.Thos. J. Latham23.Thos. H. Bowen
10.John P. Dunn24.John Dupree
11.W. H. Schenck25.Henry Robinson
12.Willie T. Nobles26.Step. D. Collins
13.John A. Leggett27.Henry D. Cason
14.W. R. Fulshire28.David H. Miller

CIRCULAR

To all who love our Lord Jesus Christ, Grace, Mercy, and Peace be multiplied.

Dear Brethren: The opinion is but too prevalent, that mankind will be justified, at the last day, by having acted in accordance with their own sincere belief, whether that belief be consistant with the word of God, or not. Indeed, the contrary opinion is deemed illiberal.

Let us dispassionately examine into this matter. It is worthy of our serious attention.

1. We find, in temporal affairs, that ignorance of the laws of God does not secure any person who violates them from the consequence of their infraction. The infant delighted with the brilliancy of the flaming candle, eagerly grasps it with his hand. But his ignorance of the laws of nature does not prevent his being burned. A person ignorantly drinks a quantity of poison, not dreaming of harm. Death comes as certainly as if he were acquainted with its deleterious qualities. Some think they may violate with impunity the laws of God against dissipation and drunkenness. Does their opinion, however sincere, alter or annul the Divine law? By no means. Dissipation injures them physically, as much as if they were aware of its evils. May we not presume they will





find it even more distructive of their happiness in a future world?

2. As in our temporal and bodily concerns, we KNOW all the commandments and laws of God are for our benefit, may we not reasonably infer that in spiritual and eternal matters His laws are equally necessary to our happiness; and that the violation of them must be prejudical to our welfare? The Scriptures inculcate the duty of worshiping our Heavenly Father. If we are to worship Him, is it necessary to do so in the way which He has pointed out? Or will some other way which we or our fellow mortals have invented, answer as well, provided we are SINCERE in the performances of it? The examples of Cain and Abel is in point. We have no authority to say Cain was not sincere in his offering. But it was not accepted, because not in accordance with God's laws—not in faith. Our Savior, speaking of the Pharisees, says, “In vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.” And again: “If the blind lead the blind both shall fall into the ditch.” If there are any advantages to be derived from worshiping God, and surely they are not few nor trivial, can we continually expect to enjoy them unless we implicitly follow His doctrines? Will any substitute answer, provided we are sincere in its performance?

Here let me remark in passing, that we do not wish to inculcate the idea that we can merit any good thing from our Creator by our acts. For after we have done all we can we are unprofitable servants. The acts of worship enjoined in the Scriptures are the MEANS, not the PURCHASE of our Scriptural enjoyments.

Does not the whole text of the Scriptures teach the necessity of entire and perfect obedience of God our Heavenly Father? How presumptious, then, the hope that our Divine Legislator will abrogate, in compliance with our opinions, those laws which he has taught us by his Son and by his Spirit entering in and through His apostles? It is the more necessary to give heed to this matter, as we are but pilgrims here on Earth; and if we





permit the blind to lead us we “shall fall in to the ditch” at the end of our earthly journey, when no chance of escaping will remain.

3. Is it true that man's belief, though erroneous, if sincere, will save him? As he lives that all mankind will be finally and eternally happy. Will his belief, if untrue save him? Will it not rather tend to make him neglect the means of salvation while here on earth, and then cause him to reject the council of God against himself? Will his belief that a fellow sinner can pardon his sins, purify the soul of anyone? Will he find that pardon ratified in the Court of Heaven? Will the belief of the “fool” who saith “in his heart there is no God” and no future existence, prevent the existence of God; or his own future existence? And so on, ad infinitum.

4. But the greatest objection to this doctrine is yet to come. It makes sincerity the supreme law—one to which all others are subordinate. It stultifies all the laws of faith and conduct, as revealed in the Scriptures. Why then have we Bible, prophets, teachers, lawgivers, etc. Why the evidence of miracles, and the attesting blood of martyrs? If this doctrine be true, sincerity and ignorance will save all. We shall need no other Savior.

Brethren, let us not be deluded by the wiles of Satan. He has contrived this doctrine in order to make mankind live satisfied with themselves, though going contrary to the word of God. Let us diligently and prayerfully examine the Scriptures, and endeavor to act in humble submission to their instructions. They are able to make us “wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good work.” 2 Tim 3c 15, 16, 17v. Let us pin our faith to no man's sleeve. As we must be judged at the last day according to OUR OWN work, so we must decide for OURSELVES, in regard





to these matters, while time and opportunity permit. “The night of death cometh, when no man can work.”

Yours in Gospel bonds,

THOMAS J. LATHAM.

Pantego, N. C.,

Nov. 20, 1848.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
KINSTON, LENOIR COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA,
IN NOVEMBER, 1849.

Thursday, Nov. 1, 1849. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, assembled at Kinston, Lenoir County, N. C.

At 12 o'clock, according to the arrangement of the last Conference, Elder John P. Dunn preached the Introductory Sermon, from Eph. 4c 1-6v, “I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord,” etc.

Conference was then organized by appointing Bro. Reuben Barrow, Moderator, and Elder Henry Smith, assistant; Brother Joel Joyner, Jr., Clerk, and Bro. Josephus Latham, assistant.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren Sam'l Windley, Sam'l H. Rountree, and Walter Kennedy be a committee to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer, and report to this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elders Benjamin Parrott and Jno. B. Gaylord, and Bro. Jno. A. Parrott be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during the Conference.

On motion, Elder Jno. D. Elwell of the Union Association and Dr. S. J. Wheeler of the Chowan Association were invited, and took seats in Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder J. A. Leggett.

Friday, Nov. 2. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder J. L. Clifton.





On motion, agreed that the name of Bro. Josephus Latham be enrolled among the preachers of this Conference.

On motion, the letters from the churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number in fellowship, amount contributed, etc. were as follows: [See tables for this year.]

On motion, agreed, that the church of Christ at Tuckahoe in Jones County, be received into this Conference.

On motion, of Elder Thomas J. Latham, Resolved that we have heard with pleasure of the organization of the Female Institute at Murfreesborough, N. C. and recommend it to the patronage of our brethren and friends.

Resolved that we avail ourselves of its advantages now offered to us by Dr. S. J. Wheeler, its agent, and appoint two persons to represent this Conference in the Board of Trustees of said Institute.

Resolved that the agents of said Institute be invited to labor in its behalf within our bounds.

On motion, agreed, that Elders John P. Dunn and Thomas J. Latham be appointed to represent us in the Board of Trustees above mentioned.

On motion of Elder Thos. J. Latham:

“Resolved, that we hail the formation of The American and Foreign Bible Society as the harbinger of a bright and glorious day; and recommend its interests to the support of our brethren.”

On motion of Elder John P. Dunn—“Resolved, that the time has arrived in the providence of God, when it becomes the duty of Christians in connection with this Conference to arouse themselves to the blessed work of extending the knowledge of the Gospel of the Son of God among the heathen Nations.”

On motion, agreed, that 1500 copies of these minutes be printed for distribution.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be requested to prepare the minutes for the press, pay for the printing, and distribute them by mail, or otherwise. And that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to him for that purpose, the funds on hand.





On motion, agreed that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder Jno. Dupree.

Saturday, November 3. Conference met according to adjournment, prayer, etc. by Elder Jno. Jarman.

On motion, agreed, that the Treasurer be instructed to pay Elder Thos. J. Latham five dollars for preparing the minutes of last Conference for the press.

On motion, Elder John F. Jones and Alfred Moore of the Free Will Baptist Conference, and Elder James L. Warren, were invited to take seats in Conference.

On motion, the Circular Letter ordered by the last Conference was called for, read and accepted.

On motion, agreed that Elder Thomas J. Latham be appointed to collect and transcribe the minutes of this Conference, from 1841 to 1849 inclusive, in a bound book; and that he present his account for said service to our next Annual Conference.

The committee of Finance submitted the following report which was confirmed.

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$43.00
To contributions this year39.05
$82.05
By amount paid for printing and distributing 1500 copies of last year's minutes$38.00
By amount allowed T. J. Latham for preparing Do.5.00
$43.00
Balance on hand$39.05

On motion agreed that the next Annual Conference be held at Rountrees M. H., Pitt County, and that it commence on Thursday before the third Lord's Day in October 1850.

On motion, agreed that Elders Benjamin Parrott and Thos. J. Latham be appointed to visit the Advisory Council, [Union Baptists] at its next Annual Meeting; and that they carry twenty copies of these Minutes for the use of said council.





On motion, agreed that Elders John P. Dunn and Josephus Latham be appointed to visit the Chowan Association, at its next Annual Meeting; and that they carry twenty copies, of these minutes for the use of said association.

On motion, agreed that Elder John P. Dunn be requested to prepare a Circular to be read at our next Annual Conference, for its approval.

On motion, agreed that Elder John P. Dunn be requested to preach the introductory sermon at our next Annual Conference; and in his failure, Elder Jno. A. Leggett.

On motion, agreed that Elders Jno. P. Dunn, Jno. H. Dillahunt, and Jno. Jarman, and Bro. Chas. Joyner, be appointed and requested to act as an Evangelical Committee for the ensuing year.

On motion, agreed that the name of Elder Robert Bond be discontinued on the list of preachers in consequence of his death.

On motion, agreed that the name of Bro. Wm. Heath be enrolled among the preachers of this Conference.

On motion, agreed that this Conference do tender their thanks to the inhabitants of Kinston, and its vicinity, for their kindness and hospitality mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder H. D. Cason.

REUBEN BARROW, Moderator.

HENRY SMITH, Ast. Do.

JOEL JOYNER, JR., Clerk.

JOSEPHUS LATHAM, Ast. Do.

N. B.—The stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, November 2. Elder Willie Nobles preached first. Elder John A. Leggett followed, from Psa. 14c 32v, “The wicked is driven away,” etc. Elder John D. Elwell, from Acts 17c 18v, “Then Certain, etc.

Saturday, Nov. 3. Bro. Josephus Latham preached first. Elder John L. Clifton followed, from 2 Tim. 4c 7v, “I have fought a good fight,” etc. Elder Jno. P. Dunn, from Luke 2c 10, 11v, “And the angel said,” etc.





Lord's Day, Nov. 4. Elder Thomas J. Latham preached from Mat. 9c 12v, “They that be whole,” etc. Elder John Dupree, from Heb. 2c 1-3v, “Therefore we ought to give,” etc. Elder John P. Dunn closed by prayer, etc.

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS BELONGING TO
THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST

1.Henry Smith16.Jacob Tench
2.John L. Clifton17.Seth H. Tyson
3.Benjamin Parrott18.John B. Gaylord
4.John Powell19.John Jarman
5.James R. Lewis20.E. S. F. Giles
6.Jno. M. Gurganus21.John H. Dillahunt
7.Wm. Latham22.Thos. H. Bowen
8.Thomas J. Latham23.John Dupree
9.John P. Dunn24.Henry Robinson
10.Wm. H. Schenck25.Stephen D. Collins
11.Willie Nobles26.Henry D. Cason
12.John A. Leggett27.David H. Miller
13.Wm. R. Fulshire28.Josephus Latham
14.Nathaniel Weeks29.William Heath
15.James F. Latham

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampD. A. Hill, H. Suggs, W. Kennedy1821170$ 2.50
LenoirWoodentonShepherd Jones25.75
LenoirKinstonJ. Parrott, W. Dunn, J. McKinney73542.50
GreeneOak GroveDaniel McArthur11126.75
GreeneHookertonWm. Ormond, B. Hart3471.50
CravenConcordBy Letter681.00
CravenLittle Swift CreekR. Powell, W. Dunn415351.50
CravenPost OakJoseph Dudley51002.00
CravenBroad CreekBy Letter14461.00
CravenBethanyW.W.Broughton, Philip Pipkin12125652.00
CravenBay CreekBy Letter42381.00





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
SampsonPiney GroveBy Letter9193$ 2.00
JohnstonMill CreekJ. Joyner, Jr. J. Harper44541202.00
BeaufortOld FordK. Woolard, L. H. Hodges4241271.50
BeaufortChocowinityBy Letter30.50
BeaufortPungo ChapelBy Letter4711.00
BeaufortConcordL. Windley, J. Whitley, T. J. Latham, Jr.31221172.00
BeaufortBeaver DamVerbal749
BeaufortSpring CreekBy Letter119.50
MartinWelch's CreekH. L. Gurganus112452.00
CarteretWare Creek28
PittElm GroveG. Murphy, C. Gardner113852.00
PittRountreesC. Cannon, L. H. Rountree, Jos. Dixon128773.00
PittOak GroveR. H. Terry, T. H. Roebuck1830.75
JonesPleasant HillJ. H. Kinsey, W. G. Fordham13461.00
JonesChinquapin ChapelBy Letter301.00
JonesTuckahoeM. Jarman, B. Brown11281.00
CumberlandBeaver CreekBy Letter48691.50
CumberlandLong BranchJ. Jackson15114.80
AMOUNT211603723211,829$ 39.05

CIRCULAR

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven.—Mat. 5c 16v.

Beloved Brethren: At our last annual Conference it was agreed that the humble individual who now addresses you, should be requested to prepare a Circular to be read in the present Conference; and, if approved, attached to the minutes.

Amidst the various subjects to which the attention of the churches of Christ, composing the Bethel Conference, etc. has been called heretofore, I have not been able to think of any one more important to our growth in grace, as a band of Christians, than that which stands at the





head of this article—I mean the upright and pious walk of the professors of our holy religion. Those words were spoken by our Savior in that beautiful discourse called the Sermon on the Mount. By acting in accordance with these instructions, the Church of Christ would illuminate the world, and constrain those out of her bounds to acknowledge the truth of her pretensions, and submit to the government of her Lord. For, says Christ, “ye are the light of the World, A City that is set on a hill cannot be hid.” In order to let our light shine in a benighted world we should follow the Apostles’ teaching, as did the early Christians. See Acts 2c 42. “And they continued steadfastly in the Apostles’ doctrine, and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayer.” We presume it will be admitted by all that the New Testament contains the Apostles’ doctrine—that doctrine in which the primitive Christians continued steadfast. If we wish to imitate them we can do so by obeying the Apostles’ instructions.

In the first place, let us hear Paul, who says, “Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another, and so much the more as ye see the day approaching.” Here we see the first Christians were commanded to meet together. But when? For what purpose? The Lord's Day or first day of the week, was the time of meeting. The breaking of bread, preaching, etc. being the purpose for which they met. See Acts 20c 7v, “And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them,” etc. Then let us come together on the first day of every week, to partake of the emblematic loaf, and other means of grace; for spiritual food is as necessary to the Christians’ Spiritual welfare, as his daily food is necessary to his bodily health. How can we neglect these things and expect a blessing from God?

Again, there is another portion of the Apostles’ teaching to be considered, the fellowship. By the fellowship we mean the weekly contributions by the members of the church, for the support of the poor, etc. See I Cor. 16c 1, 2v, “Now concerning the collections for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do





ye. Upon the first day of the week, let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.” Here is a duty enjoined on all Christians, which, I fear, is too much neglected. The duty of supporting the Gospel is also to be attended to. The Lord has commanded that the Gospel shall be preached among all nations. “The Gospel of Christ is the power of God unto salvation, to every one that believeth, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call upon him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him in whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach except they be sent?” Even so hath the Lord ordained that “they which preach the Gospel should live of the Gospel.” Let us attend to what the Lord has ordained, and send the Gospel to poor benighted sinners, that they may be brought into the fold of Christ. Shall the cause, which we love so well, languish and pine away, among us, for want of our aid? We trust it will not. The exigency of the times call aloud on every lover of the truth to step forward and do what he can for the Lord's cause. Let us remember that God will hold us accountable at the last day for the means which he has given us. Let us awake to our duty, and do what the Lord has commanded us.

Another portion of Apostolic practice, etc. is prayer. Among the numerous and diversified evidences, external and internal, of an early and direct communication from God to man, found in the Bible, prayer occupies a broad and lofty place. Man's speaking to God is, to my mind a proof that God first spoke to man. For no human being ever spoke that was not first spoken to. That God first spoke to Adam is as certain as that Adam spoke to Eve; or that their children spoke to each other, and have ever since continued to speak. Our Lord says “Ask, and ye shall receive.” Paul tells us to pray without ceasing, and in all things to give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ concerning us. We should pray to God because we stand in need of his continued assistance and blessing.





Our Lord instructed his disciples, saying, “When thou prayest enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.” Communion with God by prayer is as essential to the enjoyment of spiritual life as the air which we breath is to animal life. The scriptures say, “If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth unto all men liberally and upbraideth not.” “Let your requests be made known unto God.”

We are commanded to bring up our children in the “nurture and admonition of the Lord.” How are we to do this but by calling them around the family altar every evening, if not oftener; reading the word of God with them, and praying with and for them; and teaching them what God has done for them, and what He would have them do for themselves and others? O that our sisters would imitate the example of Lois and Eunice, who taught their son Timothy the Scriptures while a child; and thus trained him up in the way of salvation.

It is the indispensable duty of Christians to love one another. Our Savior says, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one for another.” “If a man say I love God and hateth his brethren, he is a liar.” “Whosoever hateth his brethren is a murderer,” etc. “He that loveth his brethren abideth in the light.” “Let brotherly love continue.” “Be not forgetful to entertain strangers.” “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” “Love worketh no ill to his neighbor. We are to do good to all men, especially to them that are of the household of faith.” “Let love be without dissimulation.” “Be kindly affectioned, one to another.”

We aim, beloved Brethren, to stand on original ground; to be guided in our religious course by the Bible. We cannot, therefore, fail to see and feel the importance of doing our duty to promote the cause of Apostolic Christianity, in letter and in spirit—in principle and in practice. “Let us receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save our souls. “But be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.” “But be ye





doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” And when “the chief shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of Glory that fadeth not away.”

The writer begs leave to submit the above for your consideration—praying the Great Head of the Church to guide us, by His unwavering spirit, into all truth; and, at the last day, save our souls in Heaven for Christ's sake.—Amen.

JOHN B. GAYLORD.

Kinston, N. C., Nov. 1849.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
ROUNTREE'S MEETING HOUSE, PITT COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA, IN OCTOBER 1850.

Thursday, Oct. 17, 1850. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, assembled at Rountrees Meeting House, Pitt County, N. C.

At 12 o'clock, according to an arrangement of the last Conference, Elder John P. Dunn preached the introductory sermon from I Tim. 4c 16v, “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; Continue in them: for in doing this, thou shalt save both thyself and them that hear thee.”

Conference was then organized by appointing Elder Thomas J. Latham, Moderator, and Bro. Winsor Dixon, Assistant Moderator; Bro. Alfred Moye, Clerk, and Bro. Reuben Barrow, assistant Clerk.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren Willis Dixon and Philip Pipkin be a committee of Finance, to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer, and report to this conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Henry D. Cason, and Brethren Charles Joyner, and Charles Rountree, be a committee to supply the stage with preachers during this Conference.





On motion, etc. Dr. S. J. Wheeler of the Chowan Association, and Elder Jesse P. Nevill of Kentucky, were invited and took seats in conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder John L. Clifton.

Friday, Oct. 18. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder H. Smith.

On motion, Elder Thomas Moore of the Free Will Baptist Conference was invited and took a seat in Conference.

On motion, the letters from the churches were called for, read, and accepted. The number in fellowship, amount contributed, etc. were as follows: [See tables for this year.]

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Union Chapel in Beaufort County, be received into this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Christian Chapel in Lenoir County, be received into this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at South River, in Craven Co. be received into this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Jenkins’ Chapel in Onslow County be received into this Conference.

On motion, voted that the next Annual Conference be held at Oak Grove, Greene County, and that it commence on Thursday before the 3rd Lord's Day in October, 1851.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be appointed to preach the introductory sermon at our next Annual Conference, and on his failure Elder Henry Smith.

On motion, the list of preachers belonging to this Conference was called for and examined.

On motion, agreed, that the names of Elders John Jarman and John Powell, be discontinued on the list of preachers belonging to this Conference, in consequence of their deaths.





On motion, agreed, that the name of Elder Wm. H. Schenck be discontinued, etc. in consequence of his removal beyond the bounds of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the name of Nath'l Weeks be discontinued on the list of preachers, etc.

On motion, agreed, that the excuse of Elder John P. Dunn for not having prepared a circular this year, viz, his incessant labors in the ministry and his present indisposition, be received as satisfactory to this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the Book, containing the transcript of the minutes of the Bethel Conference, etc. from 1841 to 1849 inclusive, purchased and transcribed by Elder Thomas J. Latham, according to an order of the last Conference, be received by this Conference; and that he be allowed fifteen dollars for said service.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be appointed to retain said Book in his possession, and to record therein the minutes of each General Conference, and present his account to the Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be appointed to prepare these minutes for the press, have 1500 copies printed, pay the printer, and distribute them by mail, or otherwise. And that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to him for that purpose, the funds on hand.

The committee of Finance submitted the following report:

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$39.05
To amount contributions this year47.50
$86.55
CONTRACR‘
By paid for printing and distributing 1500 copies of last year's minutes$37.05
By paid for book transcript of minutes from 1841 to 1849, to J. F. Latham15.00
$52.05
Balance on hand$34.50

On motion of Elder Jno. P. Dunn, the Evangelical Committee, appointed by the last Conference was discharged.





On motion, agreed, that Bro. Winsor Dixon be requested to prepare a Circular to be read in our next Annual Conference, and if approved, attached to the minutes of the same.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock. Prayer, etc. by Elder John B. Gaylord.

Saturday, Oct. 19. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder Nevill.

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be appointed to prepare a biographical sketch of Elder Robert Bond, to be read in our next Conference, and, if approved, recorded in the Book of the Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John B. Gaylord be appointed to prepare a biographical sketch of Elder Jno. Powell, to be read, etc. as above stated.

On motion, agreed, that Elder E. S. F. Giles be appointed to prepare a biographical sketch of Elder John Jarman, to be read, etc. as above stated.

On motion, agreed, that this Conference do tender their thanks to the inhabitants of Pitt and Greene Counties in the vicinity of Rountrees M. H. for their hospitality and kindness.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder B. Parrott.

THOMAS J. LATHAM, Moderator.

WINSOR DIXON, Asst. Moderator.

ALFRED MOYE, Clerk.

REUBEN BARROW, Asst. Clerk.

N. B.—The Stage, so far as reported, was occupied as follows:

Friday, Oct. 18. No report made to the transcriber.

Saturday, Oct. 19. Elder John L. Clifton preached at the stage, from I Peter 2c 7v, “Unto you therefore which believe, he is precious,” etc. Elder Jno. B. Gaylord preached from Acts 2c 40v, “And with many other words





did he testify and exhort,” etc. Elder Jesse P. Nevill followed, from John 17c 20v, “Neither pray I for these alone,” etc. Elder Gideon Allen closed by prayer, etc.

Lord's Day, Oct. 20. Elder B. Parrott opened worship by prayer, etc. Elder Thomas J. Latham preached from John 3c 5v, “Except a man be born of Water and of Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God.” Elder Jesse P. Nevill followed, from Acts 3c 19v, “Repent ye therefore and be converted,” etc. Elder Henry Smith closed by prayer, etc.

CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampReuben Barrow, Calv. Hartsfield7411241$ 3.00
LenoirWoodentonBy Letter223.50
LenoirKinstonWalter Dunn, J. A. Parrott22611814.00
LenoirChristian ChapelStephen H. Davis1616.75
GreeneOak GroveAlf. Moye, M. S. Carr29021173.00
GreeneHookertonJas. Albritton, W. Ormond H. Hooker114451.50
GreeneConcordJacob M. McCotter12801.25
GreeneLittle Swift CreekJohn L. Askew14351.50
GreenePost OakWm. H. Butler25711.00
GreeneBroad CreekStephen Barrington1122562.00
GreeneBethanyPhilip Pipkin, Jno. Vendric11753753.00
GreeneBay CreekBy Letter2058
GreeneSouth RiverBy Letter914
SampsonPiney GroveBy Letter1802.00
JohnstonMill CreekBy Letter41162.00
BeaufortOld FordBy Letter1271.50
BeaufortChocowinityBy Letter30
BeaufortPungo ChapelBy Letter41501.00
BeaufortConcordJas. Smith, T. J. Latham, Jr.1651053.00
BeaufortSpring's Creek19
BeaufortShilohSam'l Campbell17264.75
BeaufortUnion ChapelBy Letter9.50
MartinWelch's Chapel45
CarteretWare CreekBy Letter28.75
PittRountreesW. Dixon, C. Cannon, C. Rountree722733.00





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.ContriButions
PittElm GroveChas. Gardner, C. Moore263113139$ 3.00
PittOak GroveO. Gray, H. B. Robinson11411.00
JonesPleasant HillJas. H. Kinsey W. G. Fordham172382.00
JonesChinquapin ChapelBy Letter301.50
JonesTuckahoeJob. L. Jarman272532.00
CumberlandBeaver Creek69
CumberlandLong Branch14
OnslowJenkin's ChapelBraddock Jarman and H. Foster48482.00
AMOUNT12467229272,190$ 47.50

LIST OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF THE
BETHEL CONFERENCE, ETC.

1.Henry Smith14.Jno. B. Gaylord
2.John L. Clifton15.E. S. F. Giles
3.Benjamin Parrott16.John H. Dillahunt
4.James R. Lewis17.Thos. H. Bowen
5.John M. Gurganus18.Jno. Dupre
6.Wm. Latham19.Henry Robinson
7.Thomas J. Latham20.Henry D. Cason
8.John P. Dunn21.Stephen D. Collins
9.Willie Nobles22.David H. Miller
10.John A. Leggett23.Josephus Latham
11.Wm. R. Fulshire24.William Heath
12.James F. Latham25.Gideon Allen
13.Seth H. Tyson26.Jacob Tench

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
OAK GROVE MEETING HOUSE, GREENE COUNTY,
NORTH CAROLINA, OCTOBER 16-19, 1851.

Thursday, October 16, 1851. The ministers and messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, assembled at Oak Grove Meeting House, Greene County, N. Car.





At 12 M. according to the arrangement of the last conference, Elder Thomas J. Latham preached the introductory sermon, from I Cor. 13 c 13 v, “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three, but the greatest of these IS charity.”

The Conference was then organized by appointing Elder Thomas J. Latham Moderator, and Elder Henry Smith, assistant Moderator; Bro. Alfred Moye, Clerk, and Bro. George Joyner, assistant Clerk.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren Abraham D. Moye, Thomas Ward, and Matthew L. Carr, be a Committee of Finance, to receive the Contributions, settle with the treasurer, and report to this conference.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren Elias Turnage, Peter E. Hines, and Benjamin Brown be a Committee to supply the stage with preachers during this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 A. M. Prayer, etc. by Elder Seth H. Tyson.

Friday, October 17. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder John P. Dunn.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Tyson's Meeting House, Pitt County, be received into this Conference. And that her delegates be invited to take seats and participate in its proceedings.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Rose of Sharon M. House, Lenoir County, be received into this Conference; and that her delegates be invited to take seats and participate in its proceedings. Also the church of Christ at Tranter's Creek, Beaufort County, N. C.

On motion, Elder Jesse P. Nevill was invited, and took a seat in Conference.

On motion the letters from the several churches composing the Conference were called for, read and accepted. The number of members, in fellowship and contribution, etc. were as follows:





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
LenoirWheat SwampP. M. Hardy, S. E. Hodges, and Alex Wilson675237$ 3.00
LenoirWoodenton8
LenoirKinstonJames M. Parrott31112652.00
LenoirChristian ChapelWilliam Boyett8323.75
LenoirRose of SharonW. T. Moseley, Calv. Tucker, and Mat. Harvey241.50
GreeneHookertonW. P. Grimsley, Jas. A. May, and Thos. Taylor11451.50
GreeneOak GroveE. Turnage, M. L. Carr, and Alfred Moye11014211123.00
CravenConcord80
CravenLittle Swift CreekJ. E. Everington and F. Powell7371.00
CravenPost OakThomas Morris711.00
CravenBroad CreekStephen G. Barrington121611.50
CravenBethanyPhilip Pipkin, Edward Bowen131722.00
CravenBay CreekShadrack R. Messick521.00
CravenSouth RiverBy Letter1116
SampsonPiney Grove180
JohnstonMill CreekThos. Ward, John Harper731061.50
BeaufortOld FordKenneth Woolard, Jard G. Leggett27721271.50
BeaufortTranter's CreekWilliam Rogerson39531.00
BeaufortChocowinity30
BeaufortPungo ChapelBy Letter541541.00
BeaufortConcordThomas J. Latham, Jr.4241052.00
BeaufortShilohWm. J. Bowen, Jno. B. Bishop1072652.00
BeaufortSpring's CreekAlexander Gaskins19.50
BeaufortUnion ChapelSam V. Oden18.50
MartinWelche's CreekBy Letter4211501.50
CarteretWare CreekBy Letter1128611.00
PittElm GroveChurchill Moore and Silv. Gardner75131403.00





CountiesChurchesDelegatesRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedNo. Mbrs.Contributions
PittRountreeB. Brown, Jesse L. Jackson, and C. Cannon2154165$ 3.00
PittOak GroveJ. Taylor, O. C. Gray, H. T. Bowen1431511.25
PittTyson'sIsaiah Barrett, S. Tyson, and S. Vines, Jr.1231233.00
JonesPleasant HillJas. H. Kinsey, Ivy Fordham2111502.00
JonesChinquapin ChapelAmos Shelton1301602.00
JonesTuckahoeBenj. Brown811592.00
OnslowJenkins ChapelThos, Jarman and Edward Cox2921741.50
CumberlandLong BranchBy Letter14
CumberlandBeaver CreekBy Letter91601.50
RobesonHog SwampBy Letter45.75
Horry Dist. So Car.BethlehemBy Letter65.75
AMOUNT483547317332,567$ 51.50

CHURCHESANNUAL AND QUARTERLY, ETC. MEETINGS
Wheat Swamp4th Lord's Day in October, January, April, July.
Woodenton1st Lord's Day in September, December, March, June.
Kinston2nd Lord's Day Monthly.
Christian Chapel
Rose of Sharon3rd Lord's Day Monthly.
Hookerton3rd Lord's Day in August, November, February, May
Oak Grove [Greene]1st Lord's Day Monthly
Concord, [Craven]4th Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
Little Swift Creek3rd Lord's Day Monthly
Post Oak2nd Lord's Day in September, December, March, June
Broad Creek1st Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
Bethany2nd Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
Bay Creek3rd Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
South River1st Lord's Day in November, February, May, August
Piney Grove1st Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
Mill Creek4th Lord's Day in September, December, March, June
Old Ford2nd Lord's Day Monthly
Tranters’ Creek1st Lord's Day Monthly
Chocowinity3rd Lord's Day in September, December, March, June
Pungo Chapel4th Lord's Day in September, December, March, June
Concord, [Beaufort]1st Lord's Day Monthly
Shiloh3rd Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
Springs Creek4th Lord's Day in December, March, June, September
Union Chapel2nd Lord's Day in September, December, March, June
Welche's Creek2nd Lord's Day in September, December, March, June
Ware Creek2nd Lord's Day in May, August, November, February
Elm Grove3rd Lord's Day in March, June, September, December





CHURCHESANNUAL AND QUARTERLY, ETC. MEETINGS
Rountrees4th Lord's Day Monthly
Oak Grove, [Pitt]4th Lord's Day Monthly
Tyson's2nd Lord's Day Monthly
Pleasant Hill3rd Lord's Day in October, January, April, July
Chinquapin Chapel1st Lord's Day in February, May, August, November
Tuckahoe
Jenkins Chapel2nd Lord's Day in March, June, September, December
Long Branch2nd Lord's Day in March, June, September, December
Beaver Creek
Hog Swamp
Bethlehem

On motion, agreed, that the names of the following persons be enrolled on the list of preachers belonging to this Conference, viz: Peter E. Hines, George Joyner, Wm. May, John R. Winfield, Samuel W. Baxley, and William F. Bryan.

On motion the list of preachers was called over and examined.

On motion the circular letter prepared by Bro. Winsor Dixon, at the request of the last Conference, was read, approved, and ordered to be attached to these minutes.

On motion, the biographical sketch of Elder Robert Bond, died, prepared by Elder Thomas J. Latham, at the request of the last Conference, was read, and ordered to be recorded.

On motion, a biographical sketch of Elder John Powell dead, prepared, at the request of the last Conference, by Elder John B. Gaylord, was read and ordered to be recorded.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John H. Dillahunt be requested to prepare a biographical sketch of Elder John Jarman, dead, to be read in our next Conference, and if approved, recorded in the Book of the Conference.

On motion, agreed that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 A. M. Prayer, etc. by Elder Peter E. Hines.

Saturday, Oct. 18. Conference, met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder Benjamin Parrott.

The Committee of Finance submitted the following Report, which was confirmed.





TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$34.50
To amount of contributions this year51.50
$86.00
CONTRACR.
By amount paid for transcribing, recording, printing, and distributing 1500 copies of minutes of last year38.00
Balance on hand$48.00

On motion, agreed, that Thomas J. Latham be appointed to prepare these Minutes for the press; have 2000 copies printed; pay the printer, and distribute them by mail, or otherwise. And that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to him for that purpose, the funds on hand.

On motion, agreed, that Brother Josephus Latham be requested to write a circular letter, to be read in our next annual Conference, and, if approved, attached to the minutes.

On motion, voted, that the next annual Conference be held at Elm Grove, in Pitt County; and that it commence on Thursday before the third Lord's Day in October, 1852.

On motion, agreed, that Elder John P. Dunn be requested to preach the introductory sermon at our next Annual Conference; and on his failure, Elder John B. Gaylord.

On motion of Elder Benjamin Parrott, the following preamble and resolutions were unanimously adopted:

Whereas, certain churches belonging to the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, taking into consideration the importance of the proclamation of the Gospel, in order to the salvation of men, sent delegates to Hookerton, on the fifth Lord's Day in December, 1850, to hold a co-operation meeting; at which meeting it was agreed to sustain our worthy brethren Jesse P. Nevill, and Josephus Latham as Evangelists, until the session of this Conference: And, whereas, we believe that under the providence of God, much good has been the result of their labors for the conversion of sinners to the Holy Religion of our Redeemer—Therefore,





RESOLVED, That we recommend to the churches composing our Union Meeting, a hearty co-operation in sustaining Evangelists to promulgate the ancient Gospel within our bounds.

Resolved, That a Co-operation meeting be held at Kinston, Lenoir County, N. C., to commence on Saturday before the fifth Lord's Day in November, 1851, for the above-mentioned purpose; and that we invite the churches, or so many of them as may think proper, to represent themselves by delegates at the said time and place, or elsewhere, as may best suit their convenience.

On motion, agreed, that we do heartily recommend our beloved brother, Jesse P. Nevill, to the confidence and esteem of the brotherhood, because of his piety, and the zeal and ability with which he has contended for the “faith once delivered to the saints,” during his sojourn with us.

On motion of Elder H. Robinson, agreed, that we recommend to the brethren in general to co-operate in establishing a religious periodical within the bounds of this Conference, believing in the utility and expediency of such a measure; and that it will greatly promote the spread of the Gospel, tend to the edification of the brethren, and promote the glory of God.

On motion, agreed, that we tender our thanks to the inhabitants of Pitt and Greene Counties, in the vicinity of Oak Grove M. H., for their hospitality and kindness to the members of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder Benjamin Parrott.

THOMAS J. LATHAM, Moderator.

HENRY SMITH, Assistant Do.

ALFRED MOYE, Clerk.

GEORGE JOYNER, Asst. Do.

N. B.—The stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, Oct. 17. Elder Peter E. Hines opened worship by prayer, etc. Elder Henry D. Cason preached from





Acts iii, 19: “Repent ye, therefore and be converted,” etc. Elder John A. Leggett from Titus ii, 11: “The grace of God that bringeth salvation,” etc.

Saturday, October 18. Elder Willie Nobles opened worship, prayer, etc. Elder Jesse P. Nevill preached from Acts x, 34, 35: “Then Peter opened his mouth and said,” etc. Elder John P. Dunn from Rom. viii, 33: “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect,” etc. Elder Gideon Allen from John iii, 7: “Marvel not that I said unto thee, ye must be born again.” Elder John B. Gaylord closed by prayer, etc.

Lord's Day, October 19. Elder John P. Dunn and Elder Henry Smith broke the commemoration loaf, etc to a large number of communicants. After which Bro. George Joyner commenced worship at the stage by prayer, etc. Elder John B. Gaylord preached from Rom. vi, 17: “But God be thanked,” etc. Elder Thomas J. Latham from Rom. vi, 14, 15: “For sin shall not have dominion over you: For ye are not under the law but under grace,” etc. Elder Henry Smith closed by prayer, etc.

CATALOGUE OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF
THE BETHEL CONFERENCE, ETC., WITH
THEIR POST-OFFICES

1.Henry SmithSwift Creek Bridge, Craven County, N. C.
2.John L. CliftonPiney Grove, Sampson County, N. C.
3.Benjamin ParrottKinston, Lenoir County, N. C.
4.James R. LewisPiney Grove, Sampson County, N. C.
5.John M. GurganusPlymouth, Washington County, N. C.
6.Wm. LathamWashington, Beaufort County, N. C.
7.Thomas J. Latham, P. M.Pantego, Beaufort County, N. C.
8.John P. DunnFountain Hill, Greene County, N. C.
9.Willie NoblesGreenville, Pitt County, N. C.
10.John A. LeggettWashington, Beaufort County, N. C.
11.Wm. R. FulshireNew Bern, Craven County, N. C.
12.James F. LathamSladesville, Hyde County, N. C.
13.Seth H. TysonPantego, Beaufort County, N. C.
14.John B. GaylordKinston, Lenoir County, N. C.
15.John H. DillahuntTrenton, Jones County, N. C.
16.E. S. F. GilesTrenton, Jones County, N. C.
17.Thomas H. BowenNew Bern, Craven County, N. C.





18.John DupreeCedar Falls, Randolph County, N. C.
19.Henry RobinsonWilliamston, Martin County, N. C.
20.Stephen D. CollinsFayetteville, Cumberland County, N. C.
21.Henry D. CasonHookerton, Greene County, N. C.
22.David H. MillerGoldsborough, Wayne County, N. C.
23.Josephus LathamKinston, Lenoir County, N. C.
24.William HeathRichlands, Onslow County, N. C.
25.Gideon AllenContentnea, Pitt County, N. C.
26.Jacob TenchContentnea, Pitt County, N. C.
27.Peter E. HinesFalkland, Pitt County, N. C.
28.George JoynerFalkland, Pitt County, N. C.
29.William MayGreenville, Pitt County, N. C.
30.Saml W. BaxleyRockfish, Cumberland County, N. C.
31.John R. WinfieldGardner's Bridge, Martin County, N. C.
32.Wm. F. Bryan

CIRCULAR LETTER

Beloved Brethren in Christ:

At your last Annual Conference, held at Rountree's Meeting House, Pitt County, it was agreed that I should be requested to prepare a Circular, to be read in this Conference, and, if approved, annexed to the Minutes.

In acceding to this request, it is only from due deference to the wishes of my brethren; being conscious of my inability to discharge that duty, I, therefore, fervently desire to be guided by the spirit of revelation.

Now, in calling your attention to some subjects connected with the Christian Religion, it seems to me that our minds should be directed “to the obedience of Faith.”

From the relation in which we stand to God our Heavenly Father, when we view him through the revelation he has given of himself as our Creator, Benefactor, and Preserver, and contemplate his great love in the gift of his son to redeem our fallen race; and what he has done for us; we unhesitatingly acknowledge that we are under the strongest obligations to love and obey him. Thus we see that entire obedience and affections are due to him as God; and from our moral constitution we are made accountable to him for our neglect or disobedience.

But as our moral capacity for virtue falls short of perfect obedience to the law of God, we are brought under grace, the gospel, and taught to believe that by yielding





ourselves up in entire resignation to his will, we may hope for salvation, through our Lord Jesus Christ, who is “the end of the law for righteousness, to everyone that believeth.” “And being made perfect he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.”

Therefore we see that it is through faith and obedience, that we become the followers and disciples of our gracious Redeemer, and thus prepare to receive the promise and hope of salvation through his righteousness. Then, “let us look unto Jesus, the auther and finisher of our faith”; and by our obedience make our faith manifest. For it is impossible to prove the existence of true faith without works. Through faith we are justified, and by good works we are approved of God. “Seest thou,” says the Apostle, when speaking of Abraham, “how faith wrought with his works, and by work was faith made perfect.” Those who would obtain the end, must make use of the means necessary to its accomplishment.

Through the means of grace, it is our privilege to attain to the highest intellectual and moral enjoyments, and fulfil the injunction of our blessed Saviour, that we should “let our light so shine before men, that they may see our good works, and glorify our Father who is in Heaven.” We should strengthen our faith by meditation, by prayer, and by a devout perusal of the Holy Scriptures. And, in obedience to the instruction that we receive from and through them, we may continue in the faith which works by love, and purifies the heart; and keep the “unity of the spirit in the bonds of peace.”

Believing, “you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered unto you, and been sealed with that holy spirit of promise,” I earnestly desire that you may persevere, and continue to “adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.” And would to God, that you may be encouraged to a more perfect obedience to the law of Christ, that you may prove worthy of the cause which you have espoused; the profession you have made; and attain to the greatest enjoyments in our holy religion.





Our Saviour said to his disciples, “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me; and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father; and I will love him, and manifest myself to him.” Here we are told what constitutes a disciple of Christ, as well as the true principle and very essence of the Christian Religion. Again he says, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” And, “This is my commandment, that ye love one another as I have loved you.” The apostle says, “the end of the commandment is charity.” This charity, or love, is indispensable. Although intimately connected with all other Christian graces, without it all other things are nothing. Again, “If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us. Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his spirit.” Then if we live in the spirit, let us also walk in the spirit, for “the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, faith, meekness, temperance; against such there is no law.” “Love is the fulfilling of the law.” Hence we should not be hearers only, but doers of the word, “proving what is acceptable unto the Lord, for the fruit of the spirit is in all goodness, and righteousness, and truth.” Let us, therefore, not love in word, but in deed and in truth; for our religion consists not in opinions, but in assurances; not in speculation, but in practice. We should be, “filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ unto the glory and praise of God. Seeing you have purified your souls in obeying the truth, through the spirit, unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that you love one another with a pure heart fervently.”

By this, said our Saviour, “shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” And we are told that, by this, the primitive Christians were particularly known among the Gentiles: See, said they, how they love one another, and are ready to lay down their lives for each other. The Apostle James says, “If ye fulfil the royal law according to the Scriptures, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself, ye do well.”





As you have been directed in the last two circulars, to the doctrines of the apostles in relation to the ordinances of the church, it is deemed unnecessary to call your attention to them, and the limits of a circular will not permit me to notice all the various duties connected with the Christian religion. Therefore, believing our relations and duties to God, our Heavenly Father, to each other and to all men, are so fully developed and expressed in the Word of God, I cannot too earnestly impress upon your minds the importance, and the necessity of your reading and meditating upon it; as it is only through the medium of his word, by the spirit of truth, that we can attain to the knowledge of his will concerning us, and be prepared to love him, and follow him in the exercise of all the commandments, and duties, wherein consists the life of religion. The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.” The Scriptures are able to make us wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

We are directed to try the spirits, and the doctrines which we hear, and bring them to the standard of truth—the word of God, that they may be rationally and fairly explained. And, like the noble Bereans let us examine and search the Scriptures, whether the things we hear are true. Believing we have, in some good degree, become freed from the shackles and innovations which have been imposed on the Church of Christ, and being established and built upon the word of God—the Holy Scriptures, let us not depart from them.

Our position is an elevated one, and our mission pure; our calling is of God, and the end everlasting life. Therefore, “let us press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus,” whose essence is love, and whose delight the eternal happiness of all those who love and obey him. “Finally, brethren whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise,





think of these things.” And may the Lord direct your hearts unto the love of God, and unto the patient waiting for Christ. Amen.

WINSOR DIXON.

Holiday Hill, Greene Co., N. C.,

Oct. 9, 1851.

MINUTES OF THE BETHEL CONFERENCE AND UNION
MEETING OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, HELD AT
ELM GROVE MEETING HOUSE, PITT COUNTY,
N. C., OCTOBER 14-17, 1852.

Thursday, October 14, 1852. The Ministers and Messengers of the Bethel Conference and Union Meeting of the Disciples of Christ, assembled at Elm Grove Meeting House, Pitt County, N. C.

At 12 M., according to the arrangement of the last Conference, Elder John P. Dunn preached the Introductory Sermon, from Daniel vii 13, 14: “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of Heaven,” etc.

The Conference was then organized by appointing Elder Thomas J. Latham, Moderator, and Elder Amos J. Battle, Assistant Moderator; Brother Reuben Barrow, Clerk, and Brother Willis R. Williams, Assistant Clerk.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren George Joyner, Thomas Ward, and Churchill Moore, be a Committee to supply the stage with preachers during this session of Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Brethren Benjamin Brown, Dr. Jacob A. Hartsfield, and Louis H. Hodges, be a Committee of Finance, to receive contributions, settle with the Treasurer, and report to this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 o'clock, A. M.

Prayer, etc. by Elder Jesse P. Nevill.

Friday, October 15. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder John P. Dunn.





On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Otter's Creek M. H., in Edgecombe County, be received into this Conference; and that her delegates be invited to take seats, and participate in its proceedings.

On motion, agreed, that the Church of Christ at Pleasant Hill, Horry District, South Carolina, be received into this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the names of the following persons be enrolled on the list of preachers belonging to this Conference, viz: Amos J. Battle, John T. Walsh, and Jesse P. Nevill.

On motion, agreed, that Brother Wicker, a preacher from Virginia, be invited to take a seat in this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that the Churches at Post Oak M. H., Craven County; at Chocowinity M. H., Beaufort County; and at Long Branch M. H., Cumberland County, be discontinued in the Minutes of this Conference.

On motion, ordered, that the name of Elder John B. Gaylord, be discontinued from the list of preachers, in consequence of his death.

On motion, the letters from the churches belonging to the Conference were called for, read, and accepted. The number in fellowship, amount contributed, etc. were as follows: viz.





CountiesChurchesDelegates’ NameRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedMbrs.Con.Times of Holding Meetings
LenoirWheat SwampReuben Barrow, Hugh P. Sutton1124226$ 3.00.4 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. Apr. July
LenoirWoodenton81 Lord's Day Sept. Dec. Mar. June
LenoirKinstonJames M. Parrott, Wm. Cox212662.002 Lord's Day Monthly
LenoirChristian ChapelStephen H. Davis2261.00
LenoirRose of SharonC. Tucker, Jas. Kilpatrick, W. Ormond32291.503 Lord's Day Monthly
GreeneHookertonElias Albritton, H. Hooker232681.503 Lord's Day Aug. Nov. Feb. May
GreeneOak GroveM. L. Carr, R. H. Blount, A. D. Moye165111113.001 Lord's Day Aug. Nov. Feb. May
EdgecombeOtter's CreekWillis R. Williams413116.50
CravenConcord804 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. April July
CravenLittle Swift CreekWilliam Dunn12351.503 Lord's Day Monthly
CravenBroad CreekBy Letter12601.501 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. Apr. July
CravenBethanyWm. Bennett, Sol Broughton1242661.502 Lord's Day Oct. Jan April July
CravenBay CreekBy Letter21523 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. April July
CravenSouth RiverBy Letter22201 Lord's Day Nov. Feb. May Aug.
SampsonPiney GroveThos. J. Weeks11862.251 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. April July
JohnstonMill CreekThos. Ward, Jno. Williams571111572.504 Lord's Day Sept. Dec. Mar. June
BeaufortOld FordLouis H. Hodges, Kenneth Woollard39311501.002 Lord's Day Monthly
BeaufortTranters CreekHenry Jolly1223491.001 Lord's Day Monthly
BeaufortPungo ChapelBy Letter1551.004 Lord's Day Monthly
BeaufortConcordJas. W. Gaylord, Augustus Latham2111072.001 Lord's Day Monthly
BeaufortSpring's Creek194 Lord's Day Dec. Mar. June Sept.
BeaufortShilohGeorge Latham, Alfred Boyd22661.753 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. April July
BeaufortUnion ChapelHorace Cutler, Samuel V. Oden15113.502 Lord's Day Sept. Dec. Mar. June
MartinWelch's CreekHenry Gurganus, Wm. M. Ange151188601.002 Lord's Day Sept. Dec. Mar. June
CarteretWare CreekBy Letter321611.002 Lord's Day May Aug. Nov. Feb.
PittElm GroveChurchill Moore, Dr. J. A. Hartsfield214132.503 Lord's Day Monthly
PittRountreesJesse J. Jackson, Benj. Brown1811733.004 Lord's Day Monthly
PittOak-GroveChas. Robinson, Theophilus Keel511.504 Lord's Day Monthly
PittTysonsG. W. Barrett, T. King, A. Bynum11221103.002 Lord's Day Monthly
JonesPleasant HillBy Letter1492.003 Lord's Day Oct. Jan. Apr. July





CountiesChurchesDelegates’ NameRec'd.Bapt.Dism.Exc.DiedMbrs.Con.Times of Holding Meetings
JonesChinquapin ChapelBy Letter171762.001 Lord's Day Feb. May Aug. Nov.
JonesTuckahoeJas. Adams, B. H. Hoffman31562.002 Lord's Day Mar. June Sept. Dec.
OnslowJenkins ChapelJohn Jarman11681.50
CumberlandBeaver Creek60
RobesonHog Swamp45
HorryBethlehemRichard T. Todd2023701.00
Dist. S. C.Pleasant HillBy Letter216125.50
402063924412,604$ 50.00





On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn till tomorrow at 10 A. M.

Prayer, etc. by Elder John T. Walsh.

Saturday, October 16. Conference met according to adjournment. Prayer, etc. by Elder Willie Nobles.

The Committee of Finance submitted the following Report, which was confirmed:

TREASURERDR.
To balance on hand last year$48.00
Contributions this year50.00
$98.00
CONTRACR.
By amount paid for transcribing, recording, printing, and distributing 2000 copies of Minutes of last Conference$48.00
Balance on hand$50.00

On motion, agreed, that Elder Thomas J. Latham be appointed to prepare these Minutes for the press; have 1000 copies printed; pay the printer; and distribute them by mail, or otherwise. And that the Treasurer be instructed to pay over to him for that purpose the funds on hand.

On motion, the biographical sketch of Elder John Jarman, deceased, prepared by Elder John H. Dillahunt, at the request of the last Conference, was read, and ordered to be recorded.

On motion, the Circular Letter, prepared by Brother Josephus Latham, at the request of the last Conference, was read, and ordered to be attached to the Minutes.

On motion, agreed, that Bro. Josephus Latham be requested to prepare a biographical sketch of Elder John Gaylord, dec'd, to be read in our next Conference; and, if approved, recorded in the Book of the Conference.

On motion, voted, that the next Annual Conference be held at Wheat Swamp Meeting House, in Lenoir County; and that it commence on Thursday before the third Lord's Day in October, 1853.





On motion, agreed, that Elder Jesse P. Nevill be requested to preach the introductory Sermon at the next Conference; and, on his failure, Elder Gideon Allen.

On motion, agreed, that the Churches of this Conference, located in South Carolina, together with the Churches in the counties of Cumberland and Robeson, N. C., be allowed to form a separate organization.

On motion, agreed, that we tender our thanks to the inhabitants of Pitt County, in the vicinity of Elm Grove M. H., for their kind and hospitable treatment of the members of this Conference.

On motion, agreed, that Conference adjourn to time and place above mentioned. Prayer, etc. by Elder John L. Clifton.

THOMAS J. LATHAM, Moderator.

A. J. BATTLE, Assistant Do.

REUBEN BARROW, Clerk.

WILLIS R. WILLIAMS, Asst. Do.

N. B.—The stage was occupied as follows:

Friday, October 15. Elder Willie Nobles preached from 1 Cor. ii, 5: “That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” Elder Seth H. Tyson, from Rev. iii, 20: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock,” etc. Elder Jesse P. Nevill, from Eph. iii, 4, 5, 6: “Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand.”

Saturday, Oct. 16. Elder A. J. Battle preached from Luke x, 42: “But one thing is needful,” etc. Elder Wm. F. Bryan, from Heb. ii, 2, 3: “For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast,” etc. Elder Coleman, of Richmond, Va., from Acts xvii, 2, 3: “And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them,” etc. Elder Walsh closed by prayer, etc.

Lord's Day, Oct. 17. Elder John T. Walsh preached from John iii. Elder Coleman, from John xvi, 7, 11: “Nevertheless, I tell you the truth,” etc. Elder Walsh administered the Lord's Supper to the assembled brethren.





CATALOGUE OF ELDERS AND PREACHERS OF
THE BETHEL CONFERENCE, ETC., WITH
THEIR POST-OFFICES

1.Henry SmithSwift Creek Bridge, Craven County, N. C.
2.John L. CliftonPiney Grove, Sampson County, N. C.
3.Benjamin ParrottKinston, Lenoir County, N. C.
4.James R. LewisPiney Grove, Sampson County, N. C.
5.John M. GurganusPlymouth, Washington County, N. C.
6.Thomas J. Latham, P. M.Pantego, Beaufort County, N. C.
7.John P. DunnFountain Hill, Greene County, N. C.
8.Willie NoblesGreenville, Pitt County, N. C.
9.John A. LeggettWashington, Beaufort County, N. C.
10.Wm. R. FulshireNew Bern, Craven County, N. C.
11.James F. LathamSladesville, Hyde County, N. C.
12.Seth H. TysonPantego, Beaufort County, N. C.
13.John H. DillahuntTrenton, Jones County, N. C.
14.E. S. F. GilesTrenton, Jones County, N. C.
15.Thomas H. BowenNew Bern, Craven County, N. C.
16.John Dupree
17.Henry RobinsonWilliamston, Martin County, N. C.
18.Stephen D. CollinsFayetteville, Cumberland County, N. C.
19.Henry D. CasonWashington, Beaufort County, N. C.
20.David H. MillerGoldsborough, Wayne County, N. C.
21.Josephus LathamKinston, Lenoir County, N. C.
22.William HeathRichlands, Onslow County, N. C.
23.Gideon AllenContentnea, Pitt County, N. C.
24.Peter E. HinesFalkland Pitt County, N. C.
25.George JoynerContentnea, Pitt County, N. C.
26.William MayGreenville, Pitt County, N. C.
27.Saml. W. BaxleyLumberton, Robeson County, N. C.
28.John R. WinfieldPantego, Beaufort County, N. C.
29.Wm. F. BryanConwayborough, Horry Dist., S. C.
30.Amos J. BattleGreenville, Pitt County, N. C.
31.John T. WalshKinston, Lenoir County, N. C.
32.Jesse P. NevillFalkland, Pitt County, N. C.

CIRCULAR LETTER

Beloved Brethren:

You are aware that I was appointed at our last Annual Meeting, to prepare a Circular for the present. With reluctance, and with diffidence, I undertake to perform this duty, by calling your attention to the subject of sending out and sustaining evangelists.





“Come, and let us reason together.” In temporal matters, we are all disposed to remunerate those who labor for the public. We pay with liberality our judges, sheriffs, clerks, etc. Sometimes the candidate for a party is sustained by his partisans while he is travelling to advocate their peculiar doctrines. Who thinks of sending away the physician or lawyer without compensation? But the evangelist, while journeying to proclaim the gospel, is generally left unpaid or with a small pittance. The cause for which the Disciples of Christ are pleading, is as far superior in importance to politics, as heaven is higher and better than the earth. And yet some persons pay more in a year to aid their political party, than they ever paid to promote the proclamation of the gospel. How strangely inconsistent is man!

The exposures to which the evangelist is subject are often such as to injure his health, and frequently to shorten his life; yet when he reflects upon the worth of souls, he leaves home, and after laboring many days, and travelling many miles, returns back again, his actual expenses unpaid. This man has, perhaps, a wife, and children at home. In order to support them, it is requisite to devote all his time and talents. But he is urged to attend a protracted meeting at some place, where, after laboring several days, he returns home. Again he is solicited to attend some other meeting, possibly fifty or a hundred miles distant. He consents. How can he refuse? After an absence of weeks, he returns to the bosom of his family, without compensation, weary, and careworn, to find his domestic concerns in disorder and confusion.

Paul says: “If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?—Do ye not know, that they which minister about holy things, live of the things of the temple? And they which wait at the altar are partakers with the altar? Even so hath the Lord ordained, that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.”

We have churches that have preaching only once in three months—sometimes not so often. Their members are poor, and have not the means of supporting an evangelist.





Let us lend them “the helping hand.” The Disciples of Christ in North Carolina, number more than two thousand members. Suppose each one should contribute five cents a week—surely there are few who could not do that—while many could do more. But suppose they were to do as Paul says: “On the first day of the week let each one lay by him in store, as the Lord has prospered him.” I am confident they could average the above mentioned sum. We could thus raise more than five thousand dollars per annum. Think how many evangelists and teachers might be employed and sustained by such an amount—and, with the blessing of God, how much good might be accomplished. Soon might the gospel be proclaimed in every county of our beloved State, without burden to the proclaimers. When we picture to ourselves such a glorious result, we are encouraged; but when we remember that our brethren scarcely sustain one evangelist, we almost despair. Let me appeal to you, brethren and sisters, to aid us in employing at least three evangelists. If each of our members will pay four cents monthly it will be sufficient for that purpose. Remember, “the night cometh, when no man can work.”

May the Lord assist us in the performance of all our duties. Amen.

JOSEPHUS LATHAM.

Kinston, Lenoir County, N. C.





TAR HEEL TOWNS, 1850

Following is a list of all of the 38 “cities and towns,” in the North Carolina of 1850, as published in the seventh federal census made that year. The antique spelling of the places is here retained. It is to be observed that in only one of these towns, namely Kingston, (Kinston), were the Disciples represented with an established congregation at that time. There the Disciples had but 81 members—less than four per cent of their entire 2,190 members within the state. Thus it is seen that more than 96% of North Carolina's Disciples were situated in the “Piney Woods” open country in that early day.

Ashborough176Newbern4,681
Ashville502Oxford1,978
Beaufort1,661Plymouth951
Charlotte2,500Portsmonth510
Edenton1,607Raleigh4,518
Elizabeth City2,824Rockford639
Fayetteville4,646Rutherfordton484
Franklinton300Salem1,200
Gaston274Salisbury2,000
Goldsborough1,500Shallotte903
Greenville1,150Smithfield329
Hertford369Smithville1,464
Jackson301Swan Quarter787
Kingston455Swansborough801
Leakesville300Tarborough1,000
Leasburg300Wadesborough1,500
Lenoir300Warrenton1,242
Milton1,200Washington2,014
Morgantown558Wilmington7,264

























Un-cataloged item icon

The details for this item have not yet been reviewed by cataloging.

To request review of this item, click here.

×